Jerusalem: The Cave of the Spring of Gihon

The water flowing out of this cave, the source of the spring of Gihon, is the reason Jerusalem was built on the ridge above.The spring provides more than 34,250 cubic feet of water per day. The water runs from the cave a short distance (about 33 feet) to a water chamber.

Above the water chamber, a shaft was dug 37 feet up to a tunnel. The tunnel continues another 65 feet to a vaulted entrance just inside the city walls. People in the city would enter the upper tunnel and walk to the top of the shaft. From here they could lower their containers to the water chamber below.

The chamber could not handle the volume of water from the spring, so most of it drained into the Kidron Valley, where it was channeled along the base of the ridge for irrigation and other purposes.