Flash floods are very dangerous; they come quickly, often catch people by surprise, and their force is formidable. This is especially true of Israel’s Wadi Zin, a deceptively dry riverbed most of the time. Visitors to the Dead Sea captured rare footage of a recent flash flood – a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Periodic flooding of the Zin river is well documented in Biblical texts (river translates to wadi in Arabic or nahal in Hebrew) and in modern times.
When full, the 75 mile long river drains 600 square miles before dumping into the southern edge of the Dead Sea, but most of the time the river is dry, located as it is in the parched desert.
When it does come to life, though, with a flash flood, it is a dramatic event that is rarely witnessed since flash floods are feared in this region.
Heavy rains in the desert highlands finally made their way to the Dead Sea region, as this footage reveals. The massive sandy waters rush down the riverbed before crashing over a precipice, creating small but powerful waterfalls.
A dog barely escaped being swept up by the water and several spectators are seen running as the water crashed down the valley.
Bear in mind, however, that sudden water surges such as this are also exceptionally destructive. Any vegetation in the river’s path would have been destroyed, and soil eroded.
Still, it’s pretty cool to watch a river come back to life with a flash flood – especially in the desert.