Boating is to Carnelian Bay what blue is to Lake Tahoe. In summer, it is life. The Sierra Boat Company, considered a premier US wooden boat builder, opened here in 1952. Annually boat fanatics from around the country trailer their classic woodies to the Concours d'Elegance wooden boat show for a weekend of nostalgic Lake Tahoe cruising.
Leading up to and following this Gatsby-esque gathering, Carnelian's two state beaches belong again to dogs, kayakers and sunset seekers. In winter, Carnelian Bay's central location puts you in decision-making mode; regardless of whether you turn right or left, you'll be aimed toward the North Shore's 12 Lake Tahoe ski resorts.
The town was christened Carnelian Bay in 1860 because of the semi-precious red and yellow stones peppering the shoreline. Today, a hearty treasure of Tahoe vacation rentals line the beach as well. In addition to Jeanette McDonald and Nelson Eddy filming the movie "Rose Marie" in the 1930s, Carnelian Bay is considered a place where big, big Mackinaw trout can be found lurking in the depths.