The palaeoflood record of a hyperarid catchment, Nahal Zin, Negev Desert, Israel

Noam Greenbaum, Asher P. Schick, Victor R. Baker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


The palaeohydrology of Nahal Zin, a 1400 km2 catchment in the hyperarid Negev Desert, is inferred from slackwater deposits and palaeostage indicators in a canyon near its lower end. The palaeoflood record, augmented by the instrumental and historical records of the last decade, includes 28 floods ranging from 200 to 1500 m3s-1 over the last 2000 years. This helps to reanalyse the frequency of floods in this drainage system. The clusters of floods around 1000 years BP and again during the last 60 years are characterized by high flow magnitudes. Periods with many floods correspond well to periods with high Dead Sea levels and are probably relatively wet periods, while periods with few floods correspond well to low Dead Sea levels indicating a drier climate. Fluctuations in the frequency of floods are typical of periods of transition from one climate regime to another. Copyright (C) 2000 John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)951-971
Number of pages21
JournalEarth Surface Processes and Landforms
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2000


  • Dead Sea levels
  • Desert hydrology
  • Hydroclimatic fluctuations
  • Palaeofloods
  • Slackwater deposits

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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