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The Castle of Lake Chelan

Posted by Johnine Larsen on December 11, 2017
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A tiny castle looks over the kingdom of Lake Chelan. It perches on a rocky outcrop just above the water, with a steep cliff-hill behind it. Like all good castles, you find yourself wondering how they managed to build it—all the materials brought in across the water and hauled up to that outcrop, construction cramped into that tiny space. Everything about it looks like a mystery.

This isn’t “a house that kind of looks like a castle.” This thing is a column of genuine stone walls capped by a conical roof. It has arched windows and even buttresses. And it is tiny. The two-story, one-bedroom castle totals just 288 square feet. It’s more a keep, really.

This miniature Medieval throwback begs the question: Why live in a tiny home when you can live in a tiny castle? Well, amenities, for one. True to form, this castle lacks heat or running water. (It does, however, break from tradition with carpet and linoleum.)

It also rejects modern modes of transportation like roads. The only way to access this castle is by boat, and once you voyage over there, you feel as if you’ve left the 21st century. There are no visible neighbors, no power lines—just a dock and, of course, beautiful nature on all sides.

Surprisingly, the castle of Lake Chelan wasn’t built in the era of William the Conqueror or Charlemagne. It’s a 2004 construction. My guess is that a local built this castle as a place to picnic or stay the night on long fishing trips or boating outings. But that’s not exactly romantic, so if I owned the place, I might stretch the truth a little. I’d play up the mystery, and maybe hint at a lost Spanish explorer and an ancient, tiny kingdom.