Relief Map of the Valley of Tears

Using those 1:50000 topo maps of Israel, I whipped up a very rough relief map of the Yom Kippur War battlefield the Valley of Tears between Booster Ridge and Mt. Hermonit. Read on…


The area (I believe) from the map the represents Booster ridge and the Eastern edge of Mt. Hermonit:
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I chose this 5 km square area and transcribed in onto foam core posterboard, at 1 cm = 200 km, or a 20″ square board.

The topo map has 100 meter countour lines, and the thickness of the foam core is about 1 cm, so by using a layer of foam core for each layer of elevation, we get a relief map with the vertical and horizontal to scale:

This view is from the south. You can see what I believe to be Booster Ridge (directly north of Kuneitra) on the southern edge of the map, and Mt. Hermonit to the Northwest. The red line is where I’ve approximated the tank ditch, based on Chaim Herzog’s maps on War of Atonement. Fortification A3 would be just off the map to the East (including it would have left off the steep rise of Hermonit, which looks cool). Here are the other views:

The whole Purple Line was about 40km wide (not linear distance), or about 14 feet long at this scale…not undoable (although I won’t!)

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2 Responses to “Relief Map of the Valley of Tears”

  1. John Kinder Says:

    Hi Andy,
    Could you tell me which mapsheet this is on. I don’t have a russian speaking spouse. I have been trying to locate the “Valley of Tears” on these maps but have never been able to match the topo with other maps I have. Mapsheet and gridsquares would be great.
    Thanks!

  2. Andy cowell Says:

    Sure. Looks like 33 10′ latitude, just past 35 35′ longitude. The left side of the junction of maps 9-36-108-4 and 9-36-108-2 on http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/EART/israel/israel50k.html
    Kuneitra is pretty easy to find, it’s the only large city on may 9-36-108-2. I took Booster to be the somewhat non-descript hill 2 km directly north of Kuneitra (I found a ref. in “War of Atonement” that had Booster “north” of Kuneitra). My wife (and her father) couldn’t find any name of Hermonit, but I believe it is the hill just NW of what I have as Booster, two squares up the “60-61” horizontal grid in map 9-36-108-4.
    I feel pretty confident on this, based on the layout of Kuneitra and the road N of it, which apparently had defensive position A3 on it, and Herzog or the Osprey Golan book (the only sources I have at hand) seem to indicate A3 was pretty close to the fighting. No real info on exactly where the tank ditch was; the red line here is approximately where Herzog has had it drawn.

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