King’s Throne

Brought to you from the Natural Bridge Caverns, near San Antonio, Texas — it’s the King’s Throne:

King's Throne

Honestly, I’m not sure where they got the “throne” part of this — looks more like a geological Cthulhu to me. Just the same, it’s an impressive formation.

The Natural Bridge Caverns are in the heart of Texas’ “hill country,” essentially an old limestone plateau since shaped into hilly scrublands by underground erosion and subsequent collapse (much like what happened in the northern Yucatán peninsula). These caverns were formed when the water table lowered, and an eroded underground space gradually was decorated by stalactites and stalagmites formed when water percolated through the surviving limestone overhead, carrying minerals (largely calcite) into their new home.

The King’s Palace

A good demonstration of the color of light, courtesy of Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico:

The King's Palace

This is one of the “marquis” attractions at Carlsbad Caverns, but really doesn’t look this colorful in person (Journey to the Center of the Earth not withstanding).  But it’s lit by spotlights of slightly different color temperature — so if you grab a picture on your visit, and attempt to pick some feature for your white balance, you’ll wind up with this slightly gaudy view in your photo.