Quito is encircled by eight volcanoes. Although most are dormant, Guagua Pichincha and Reventador remain active. The city is also plagued by occasional seismic activity. The most impressive sight from El Panecillo is Cayambe. Despite its 43 mile distance from Quito, its nearly 19,000 foot summit soars above the horizon on a clear day. The compound volcano last erupted in 1786. Cayambe is the only place directly on the equator that is permanently covered with snow and glaciers.