I haven’t acclimated to the Northern Hempishere’s winters, but I was excited to experience the 2012’s first snowfall and see New York shine under snow. Don’t get me wrong, winter has blessed me with her presence here many times before — last year’s heavy storm left a lasting impression on me; I haven’t relocated back to warmer shores yet (as I vowed to do so at the time) — but I do miss New York’s snow-fringed beauty.
Here’s how the weekend unfolded…
Drinking hot chocolate and watching movies all day would have been idyllic, but I decided to make the most of the 3+ inch snowfall and headed to Manhattan’s West Village. With the Christmas festivities over and holiday lights now taken down, the neighborhood’s streetscapes were still as pretty as ever, with window sills framed by snow, street lights sprinkled with a light dusting of flakes, sidewalks caked with slippery ice. A few people meandered about, dog walkers and window shoppers, who strolled around the cobblestoned Meatpacking District as store owners salting the way.
Along with a few determined sightseers, I ascended to the High Line via its Gansevoort Street entrance and enjoyed some of its views until the wind pretty much stopped me in my tracks and pushed me towards the nearest exit. Unfortunately, no amount of layering in the sub-zero temperatures could keep me from that chilled-to-the-bone feeling; my fingers went numb after an hour and I had raced back home to defrost with a hot cup of coffee.
NB: I altered a few of these shots with the retouch menu on the Nikon D5000.
With the temperatures a few degrees higher, I pictured Central Park in my sights. I’d seen the beauty of its fall colours, and more recently – Manhattan’s silhouetted skyline from its Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir, on a mild winter’s day. Now I needed to see it under snow. I ventured up-up-uptown to 79th Street and Central Park West.
Manhattan’s streets were painful to walk along, as the snow had turned into either dirty slush or brown puddles. So, it was a relief to step into Central Park’s otherworldly beauty — it looked like a winter wonderland, blanketed under pure white snow, with the park’s trees and bridges outlined in white. The Park had transformed into a playground for snow-enthusiasts. Skiers whizzed past; sledders whoosed down hills; ice skaters circled Wollman Rink. Pathways crunched underfoot, a raft of ducks sought kept warm under low hanging tree branches where the water had not yet frozen over. Some birds braved a stroll along the ice. The continual sound of clicking hooves meant the tourists were keeping the horse-and-carriages rides busy.
I could go on, but I won’t. I’ll let this series of photos speak for themselves. They were taken as I made my way from 79th Street, toward The Shakespeare Garden and on to Belvedere Castle. From there, the Ramble’s meandering pathways led me over the Oak Bridge, along the shoreline of The Lake, past Sheep’s Meadow and Wollman Rink. After snapping a picture of The Plaza from the shores of The Pond, I made my way into slushy Manhattan via the 59th Street and Fifth Avenue exit.
I’m grateful for this snowfall and whilst I hope this is the last one, I won’t be dreading the next (as much). Enjoy!