A

David

Darling

cirque

cirques

Southwest-looking oblique aerial photograph showing a number of snow-covered cirques, cut into the summit of a Coast Mountains ridge along the Alaska-Canada border, east of Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska. Credit: USGS.


A cirque, also known as a corrie (in Scotland) or cwm (in Wales), is a bowl-shaped, steep-sided hollow formed by glacial erosion, usually occupied by a lake where the glacier has retreated, or by névé where the glacier is still present. Typically, a cirque has a lip at its lower end. The term is French and is derived from the Latin word circus. See also erosion.