Although various definitions can be found in the scientific literature, tafoni, Italian for “cavern,” are commonly defined as small to large cavity features that develop in either natural or manmade, vertical to steeply sloping, exposures of granular rock with smooth concave walls, and often round rims and openings. The honeycomb-type erosions, seen here at Salt Point SP, California, are caused by seasonal wetting and drying of the sandstone, weakening it into pits, knobs, ribs and ridges.

Technical Details

Composite: No
EF 28-70mm @ 70mm, f/11 @ 1/640 sec, ISO 1000


Beautiful, Bob. Love the lighting and detail. It has a wonderful abstract feel to the formation. Thanks for sharing.

Thank you, Linda. This was a fortuitous find as most of the other formations were on walls whereas this was solitary and appeared to me to be somewhat animated, crab-like.

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A really nice find, Bob. I have never seen one of these before. Appreciate you sharing it.

Than you, Ms. Freeman. I have visited the area a few times because it is large and diverse enough to warrant the time. As a State Park there are camp sites and well-traveled trails to help first-time visitors.

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That’s a cool picture. I’m absolutely fascinated by these shapes. This place certainly offers incredible opportunities. Thanks for sharing.

Thank you, Martin. I too was fascinated with these eroded rocks. If you choose to visit the area be prepared to spend some time looking for shapes that intrigue you. It can seem a daunting task because of the variety and volume over a widely-spread location.