Last week’s predictions of Jerusalem Snowmageddon proved to be a bust. At present, the 1950 snow is still the most widespread snow event in Israel’s history since the beginning of the meteorological measurements in 1870. During that event, it snowed in most of the country — even Tel Aviv.
According to Wikipedia, the 1950 snow event began in early January when volleys of hail fell in Tel Aviv and a few flakes of snow fell in the mountains of the Upper Galilee and Jerusalem.
On January 27, it began to snow in the northern mountains, and in Jerusalem. The cold wave began to expand to the rest of the country and snow began to fall in the higher regions. On the 28the of the month, it snowed in Haifa and even Tel Aviv experienced several minutes of snowfall.
On January 29, 1950, newspaper Al Hamishmar reported, “A miracle of weather occurred yesterday for the entire country: the rainfall, whose nature changed since the beginning of the [rainy] season, from light rain to thunder and lightening, to heavy rain and hail — on Friday morning, with the drop in temperatures, turned to snow covering the hills, the coastal plain and the valleys”.
“Ten minutes of snow in Tel Aviv. ‘Look, it’s really snow’! — Tel Aviv passers-by greeted one another with these cries of wonderment on Friday at 8:15, as thick snowflakes began falling on the city. The snow was an especially pleasant event for the ‘Sabras’ and the schoolchildren who had never before seen ‘live’ snow.
“But their happiness ended quickly; after ten minutes the snow ‘evaporated’ and ordinary raindrops continue to plague the city residents, especially those standing from early morning, ‘freezing from the cold, at cinema box offices in order to purchase tickets for the Saturday evening show”.
One week later, on February 6th and 7th, heavy snow began falling across the country, reaching a depth of 60 cm in Safed, 100 cm in Jerusalem, 17 cm in Haifa, 12 –19 cm in Tel Aviv and Lod.
It also snowed in Petah Tikva, Netanya and Samaria, Rishon Lezion, Rehovot and the hills around the Sea of Galilee and the Negev.
On February 8, snow also came to the Dead Sea where 8 cm of snow was reported.
The photos come courtesy of Israel Revealed to the Eye, a communal initiative with the purpose of recording, saving, and preserving the photos that document the state and the country, its residents and its history.
The project, which began during the centennial celebrations in 2009 of the founding of Tel Aviv, was expanded in 2011 to cover additional locations in Israel.
For more photos of snow in Israel — and other events from the country’s lifecycle, visit Israel Revealed to the Eye. And if you have photos to contribute to this “family album” — you’re invited to contact the project via their website or Facebook page.