Israel braces for cold front, possible snow in Jerusalem
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Israel braces for cold front, possible snow in Jerusalem

Temperatures forecast to drop below freezing in mountainous areas of the country by Tuesday; Mount Hermon ski resort to close due to stormy conditions

A tractor clears snow from a road as snow falls in the Old Katamon neighborhood in Jerusalem, on January 16, 2019. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Illustrative: A tractor clears snow from a road as snow falls in the Old Katamon neighborhood in Jerusalem, on January 16, 2019. (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

Israel on Saturday was bracing for a patch of cold weather, with potential snow forecast in Jerusalem and other areas of the country.

The cold front was expected to see temperatures hover around freezing in mountainous parts of the country in the days ahead, before warming up midway through the week.

In Jerusalem, the Israel Meteorological Service forecast a low of 3 degrees Celsius (37.4° Fahrenheit) for Sunday, with “likely light snow in the mountains of the north and center” of the country.

The snowfall would be the first of the winter in Jerusalem.

Temperatures were expected to continue dropping before bottoming out on Tuesday, when they could fall below freezing in Jerusalem and Safed. Tel Aviv was forecast to have a low of 6° Celsius (42.8° Fahrenheit) that day, while the northern city of Haifa would have a low of 4° Celsius (39°.2 Fahrenheit) and Mitzpe Ramon in the south a low of 2° Celsius (35.6° Fahrenheit).

Temperatures were not forecast to be as cold along the coast, while the meteorological service said light showers could continue in large parts of the country through Tuesday.

The ski resort at Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights said it would be closed Sunday due to the stormy weather conditions.

Some 40 centimeters (15.75 inches) fell Saturday at the lower part of the resort.

Israel has experienced a wet winter so far, with record-breaking downpours in late December and early January that overwhelmed drainage systems and produced widespread flooding in many cities, while also filling up water reservoirs to levels not seen in years.

On Saturday, the Israel Water Authority said the Sea of Galilee was at 210.10 meters below sea level, 1.3 meters from its fullest level.

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