November 3, 2014, Updated August 5, 2015

Huge hailstones — bigger than the size of golf balls — pelted Israel’s north in a crazy and surprising winter storm on Monday. The Krayot area just north of Haifa got the worst beating by the wind-driven ice-pellets, and residents reported damage to their cars, property and trees.

“We were woken up at around 6 a.m. by a loud noise,” Yair Geva from Kiryat Motzkin told Ynet News. “It was amazing to see the size of the hailstones. I’ve been living in the Krayot my entire life and this is the first time I’ve seen hailstones this size.”

“We woke up suddenly during the night to the sound of heavy knocking outside,” Shiran Ohayon of Kiryat Motzkin told Ynet. “It was just scary, and the scariest was how it just got stronger… It’s just unbelievable that the weather went crazy like that.”

The temperatures, oddly enough, remained a high 21C (70F) throughout the hail storm.

Meanwhile, in Tel Aviv, residents reported a tornado on the horizon. Fortunately, the jaw-dropping spiral formation coming out of the clouds was actually a rare waterspout and not a violently rotating spiral of air.

Smartphone users were quick to swipe to camera and video modes and snap evidence of the wintery wonders. Social media made sure the video clips and photos got likes and shares.

Rains poured down in central Israel as well, taking part of a roadway out in the city of Holon.

The Israel Meteorological Service says rain will continue in the north and center of the country bringing the possibility of flash floods in dry riverbeds – and more outstanding photography.

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