“We've just experienced something which I've never seen in 32-years surfing,” says Israel-based surfer Arthur Rashkovan about this historic session last week that roared through the Med and straight to the shores of his home turf.
“Usually, it's a one day wonder here. But last week was three days of 4-6ft clean, offshore conditions. Tuesday was the best day, by far,” he added.
Sometimes, when Israel starts to switch on, it really can do its finest Hossegor impression. “I couldn't take my eyes off the surf,” says Amit Schestowitz, a lensperson based in Tel Aviv about last week.
“Usually In Israel we have only a few days a year that's really worth mentioning, Last Tuesday was one of those days. Typically it happens after big storms when the wind is coming down and the offshore wind enters.
“For me, as a surf photographer, and of course for the surfers this is what we wait for all year. I woke up early to get to the beach at first light, I drove an hour and a half to the north of Israel with a lot of expectations, it was worth it, 3-5ft perfect, glassy waves.
“Some of the best surfers were in the water; Yoni klein, Gil keren, Daniel sigura, Tal assayg, Gal zinger, Amir heller And many more good ones.
"The vibe in and out of the water was amazing, the frequency of the sets was very good, it was a big celebration.”
As for what made it all so good? “The swell originated from a low pressure that had been drifting around in the western Mediterranean for several days, and began to move east on Sunday January 9,” says MSW forecaster Tony Butt.
“As the centre of the system passed over Greece, it intensified to the south, creating an area of strong westerly winds pointing straight towards Israel. The following day, another centre of low pressure followed in the tracks of the first one, maintaining a strong westerly airstream across the southeast Med for the next two days, particularly in the passage between Crete and Libya.
“This generated swell off the coast of Israel that arrived on Monday and lasted for most of the week, with wave heights ranging from about three to six feet. Local wind conditions were average at first, with fresh southerlies from the influence of that first low pressure. Then things improved during the middle part of the week as high pressure pushed in the from the south, producing light or moderate winds from the southeast. Finally, wind conditions deteriorated again towards the end of the week, with moderate winds from a westerly quarter.”