A piedmont is an area at the base of a mountain or mountain range. The word piedmont comes from the Italian words pied and monte, which mean "foot" and "hill."

Piedmont lakes and piedmont glaciers, for example, are simply lakes and glaciers located at the foot, or base, of mountains. Malaspina Glacier in southeastern Alaska is the largest piedmont glacier in the world, spilling out of the St. Elias Mountains onto the coastal plain between Yakutat Bay and Icy Bay.

The term by itself can also refer to a specific mountain foothill region. The Piedmont region of northwestern Italy sits at the base of the Italian Alps. In the eastern United States, the Appalachian Piedmont stretches from New Jersey to Alabama, along the foot of the Appalachian Mountains. Farther west lies the Colorado Piedmont. A relatively narrow strip of land sandwiched between the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains, the Colorado Piedmont is home to most of the people and industry of the state of Colorado.

piedmont
Piedmont is one of Italy's 20 regions, with its capital in Turin. Regions of Italy function like states in the U.S. or provinces in Canada.

Martian Piedmont
On Mars, a large piedmont sits at the base of the huge volcano Olympus Mons. Scientists examining photos of this piedmont concluded in 2006 that it was formed by an enormous, ancient glacier. This Martian glacier would have been nearly four times as large as Alaska's Malsapina Glacier, the largest piedmont glacier on Earth.

base
Noun

bottom layer of a structure.

Noun

low, flat land lying next to the ocean.

foothill
Noun

hill at the base of a mountain.

Noun

mass of ice that moves slowly over land.

Great Plains
Noun

grassland region of North America, between the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi River.

industry
Noun

activity that produces goods and services.

Noun

body of water surrounded by land.

mountain
Noun

landmass that forms as tectonic plates interact with each other.

mountain range
Noun

series or chain of mountains that are close together.

Noun

area at the bottom of a mountain.

piedmont glacier
Noun

mass of ice moving slowly over land at the bottom of a mountain.

piedmont lake
Noun

body of freshwater at the bottom of a mountain.

sandwich
Verb

to put an object between two other objects.