It may seem as though I am photographing a hike through some canyons out in the American Southwest. Nothing can be further from the truth. Despite the illusion of canyons, these sand tufas range from 6-18 inches tall. It is the intentional low camera angle that makes you think otherwise.
(Click thru the image for the 700px view)
While similar to the calcium carbonate tufa towers Mono Lake is famous for, these are, in fact, sand tufas. The similarity is the tops of these sand tufas are the same calcium carbonate, but these structures are primarily sand. With winds blowing sand into these structures, the sand erodes faster and is shaped into these delicate structures while the calcium carbonate tops erode much slower.
EXIF data: Nikon D7000, spot metering mode, ISO 100, 34mm, f/11, 1/100 sec
Mono Lake (CA), Navy Beach, Sand Tufa, Monochrome. Mono Lake, Lee Vining, California. October 14, 2011. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.