Sauna Lake
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Nearest Entry Point: Mudro Lake Fishing: Unknown
Maps: Fisher F-17, McKenzie #11 Lake Depth: Unknown
Bushwhack Rating: Lake Size: 41 acres; MN DNR Lake Map
Campsites: None Wildlife Seen on Visit:
Last Visited: Never Lake Elevation: 1290 feet
Water Clarity: MN DNR Fire History: 1894 and 1822

Sauna Lake

Have not yet visited this Primitive Management Area lake. The information displayed on this page are notes used for planning a future trip to this area. Use the information on this page at your own risk.

Tick Lake PMA

Sauna is a "mostly" dead end lake to the west of Jackfish Lake. As of 2002, there was no evidence of the portage that used to exist between Jackfish Lake and Sauna Lake (Pauly, 2005). It is conceivable that one could bushwhack from the south end of Sauna Lake to Maingan Lake. The origin of the name of the lake is unknown. Perhaps it was visited on a warm, humid day and the place had the feeling of a sauna.

The fire history of this area includes the 1894 Chad Lake/Cummings Lake/Lac La Croix/Crooked Lake complex. This was one of two large fires that affected the western part of what is now known as the BWCA during that year. Another fire affected this area way back in 1822. This burn is known as the Hook Lake/Hegman Lake/Crooked Lake complex (Heinselman, 1999).

Heinselman, Miron, The Boundary Waters Wilderness Ecosystem (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1999).
Pauly, Daniel, Exploring the Boundary Waters (Minneapolis:  University of Minnesota Press, 2005), 157.

Approach to Sauna Lake

The most likely approach is through Jackfish Lake. Visit that page for specifics on this large lake. Another approach would be from Maingan Lake. This route will require more effort and involves coming up through the peat bog to the southwest of Sauna Lake.

Bushwhack to Sauna Lake

From Jackfish Lake, there are perhaps two ways to get into Sauna Lake. For starters, there used to be a 50 rod maintained portage that connected the eastern most point of Sauna Lake to Jackfish Lake across the shortest distance between the two lakes. The other way is to navigate along the creek that connects the two lakes. Stretches of this creek are navigable, but other parts of it are not. This is also a longer overall distance. This creek passes entirely through a peat bog. A less likely and more difficult approach to Sauna Lake would be from Maingan Lake involving about a 120 rod bushwhack mostly through open peat bog and a short stretch of forest near Jackfish Lake.

Exploring Sauna Lake

Sauna Lake has a nice varied shoreline of forest, bogs and rock outcrops. This small lake likely contains northern pike as it is directly connected to Jackfish Lake. There is an island (or what is nearly an island) in the north end of the lake that is fairly large. A large rounded point justs out into the lake from the north shore. Perhaps one of those two geographic features could provide a place to pitch a tent. Sauna Lake is probably fairly shallow, but its surface is open water and is not choked with vegetation.

PMA #1: Weeny PMA #4: Tick PMA #7: Pitfall PMA #10: Hairy
PMA #2: Canthook PMA #5: Spider PMA #8: Mugwump PMA #11: Weasel
PMA #3: Sundial PMA #6: Drag PMA #9: Humpback PMA #12: Fungus
Circle Lake Maingan Lake Sash Lake Tick Lake
Gypo Lake No-see-um Lake Sauna Lake Wabosons Lake (Rabbit)
Jackfish Lake Pakwene Lake Section Sixteen Lake Webfoot Lake
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