Fannette Island

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Fannette Island, Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe, California
Emerald Bay with Fannette Island

Fannette Island is the only island in Lake Tahoe, California/Nevada, United States. It lies within Emerald Bay, on the California side of the lake. Over a long period of time, it was called many different names, including Coquette, Fanette, Baranoff, Dead Man's, Hermit's, and Emerald Isle. The ruins of a small stone building, the "Tea House", constructed by Mrs. Lora Josephine Knight, the owner of Vikingsholm, stand on the granite islet. Fannette Island, along with Vikingsholm and Emerald Bay, is a part of Emerald Bay State Park. It is accessible by boat, canoe, or kayak. Swimming to the island is not allowed, due to hazards including extremely cold waters and boat traffic in the area.

Captain Dick Barter, the Hermit of Emerald Bay[edit]

Fannette Island was the home of Captain Dick "Them's my toes" Barter from 1863 to 1873. The eccentric captain had moved from England and built his own tomb and chapel on the island. He enjoyed sailing and earned his nickname from his penchant of showing his self-amputated toes to guests. Ironically, he was never interred in the chapel he built, as he was lost in a storm off Rubicon Point in 1873.


Coordinates: 38°57′15″N 120°06′02″W / 38.9540745°N 120.1004631°W / 38.9540745; -120.1004631