Nieve Penitente

nieve penitente

[nē′ā·vā ‚pen·ə′ten‚tā]
(geology)
A jagged pinnacle or spike of snow or firn, up to several meters in height. Also known as penitent.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Nieve Penitente

 

a snowy surface in the form of numerous consecutive needles and pyramids that resemble human figures bent in prayer. Nieves penitentes are several meters high and form as a result of rapid thawing and evaporation. They are encountered most commonly in barren mountainous subtropical and tropical regions. The classical site for the formation of nieves penitentes is the névé region of Ecuador.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.