Anyone planning on having a sun-filled vacation in Israel recently must have been sorely disappointed. Despite recent Israeli winters that were mild and dry, these last few months have seen an overwhelming amount of rainfall that’s left its mark on streets, rivers and waterfalls throughout the country.

Rainfall in Israel from September to February reached an astonishing 130 percent of the annual average for this time of year, and 114% of overall amount of winter rain, according to Israel’s Water Authority.

A stream flows with water after heavy rains in the Golan Heights in northern Israel, January 2019. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/Flash90

 

A stream is formed after heavy rain and snow near Moshav Beit Zayit, near Jerusalem, January 2019. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

This is particularly good news considering that the last five years saw less-than-average rainfall during wintertime.
More good news is that the Sea of Galilee’s water level rose by 71 centimeters (2.3 feet) during February.

Muddy flood water flows into the Red Sea near the southern city of Eilat on a storm winter day, March 2019. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/Flash90

 

Muddy flood water flows into the Red Sea near the southern city of Eilat on a storm winter day, March 2019. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/Flash90

Unfortunately, the lake still needs another 4.05 meters (13 feet) to fill up completely. Also in unfortunate news is that the ever-shrinking Dead Sea lost another 7 centimeters (2.8 inches) during that same month.

Nahal El Al in northern Israel, February 28, 2019. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/FLASH90

 

The Sa’ar waterfalls flow strongly after heavy rains in the Golan Heights, January 2019. Photo by Hadas Parush/FLASH90

The heavy rainfall, however, has made for some stunning scenes such as gushing streams and overflowing waterfalls.
Less-than-wonderful-scenes occurred in Israeli cities, where the rainfall occasionally flooded streets and required emergency intervention to free trapped drivers from roads-turned-rivers.

People hold umbrellas to protect themselves from the rain in Jaffa Street in Jerusalem, November 2018. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

 

Israeli emergency teams rescue a man from a car stranded at a flooded river near the entrance to Jerusalem on February 28, 2019. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)

Still, we’ll be looking at these photos with wonder and longing when the scorching sun hits us this coming summer.

For now, the delightful weather of spring is upon us.

The sun breaks through clouds on a winter day in the Golan Heights, January 2019. Photo by Maor Kinsbursky/Flash90