image Photo: Flash90

Christmas snow falls in the Holy Land

At least 25 cm (nearly 10 inches) of snow has accumulated on Mount Hermon in northern Israel.

By Erin Viner

Flurries of snow dusted the Holy Land just in time for celebration of Christmas.

A major weather event, called the Carmel Storm, swept the northern and central parts of the country this week.

Winter rains showered Jerusalem with 37.5 mm (almost 1.5 inches), 63.1 mm (nearly 2.5 inches) fell in the coastal city of Haifa, and 24.7 mm(approximately an inch) in Tel Aviv. The highest level of 96 mm (of about 3.6 inches) of rain was recorded in the northern moshav agricultural community of Amikam, followed by Safed (also spelled “Tsfat”), with 75.1 mm (about 3 inches).

The Sea of Galilee was blessed with 2 cm (0.78 inches), rising to 210.76 meters (691.5 feet) below sea level by yesterday morning. The water level remains 1.96 meters (about 6.4 feet) below what is considered the ‘upper red line’ that signifies fullness, and 2.25 meters (about 7.4 feet) above the ‘lower red line’ indicating dangerously low waters.

More snowfall is expected on the Hermon peaks and further rainfall throughout the country, accompanied by strong winds reaching 55-62 mph (90-100 kph) or higher. Powerful gusts drove waves on the Mediterranean Sea to rise as high as 8 meters (26 feet).

Those celebrating the holiday feel blessed for a White Christmas.