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    Posted December 13, 2013 by
    New York, New York
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Wintry weather 2014

    More from JoelGraham

    Cold sunset over Manhattan


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     JoelGraham went to the top of 30 Rockefeller Plaza to take these dramatic photos of Manhattan on Tuesday. He arrived at noon and kept shooting until 4:45 p.m. Though he describes the weather as bitter and cold, he wanted to capture the dynamics of the changing weather.
    "It was quiet. Outside, it was cold and windy with snow showers," he says. "It was a race against time though because it would not have worked if it cleared after the sun set. And during the down time, I thought about life and Christmas and things like that. It was nice to come back into reality and be on top of 30 Rock."
    - PM91, CNN iReport producer

    It snowed in New York City on Tuesday. I had looked at a radar image before I went out at 9:00 a.m. and I knew there would be a break in the snow late in the morning. It would start again and then finally clear.


    I found myself in Times Square when it stopped snowing at 11:00 am. It was overcast and cold. I had a coffee and thought about a strategy for the snow photos that I anticipated during the next couple of hours. Then I remembered the weather map, and decided to take a chance by going to the top of 30 Rockefeller Plaza. I walked over to the building and it was quiet. There was no one in line and I walked up to the counter to purchase a ticket.


    They were kind enough to advise me that there was "zero visibility." I laughed and told them that I understood that but still wanted to go up to the top of the building anyway. The employees at the elevator also told me that there wasn't going to be much of a view.


    I was the only one up there in a general sense. A few people would come and go but no one stayed long. It was bitter cold and windy. I spent a lot of time indoors waiting it out. The staff and security were nice. I think they understood what I was doing. The top of the Empire State Building would appear for an instant but then get swallowed in the snow or the low clouds. Once in a while I would catch a glimpse of Central Park. Finally, after a few hours, it began to clear. It seemed like the views changed dramatically every 5 minutes. The sun was low in the sky and getting ready to set for the evening.


    Visitors began to appear to take it all in. It was a long afternoon on top of 30 Rock but it was nice in many ways to have it to myself. That's not to say that I was the only one up there but it felt that way at times. There was a couch I could sit on and think about things as I looked out the window. A strange way to spend the afternoon. Surreal at times. Thinking about life and coming back into reality on top of New York City on a wintry day. I liked it.


    I have the full sequence of "zero visibility" photos but I have posted the dramatic ones here.

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