Last season brought mixed results for the southern Rocky Mountain resorts, due mainly to the effects of La Niña. The “Little Girl” climate phenomenon may be hanging around again this season, but that won’t deter the optimism at New Mexico and Arizona resorts.

All 10 resorts in these two states have announced either specific or typical opening dates for the 2011/2012 season—of course, dependent upon snow and weather conditions.

[R366R, Sipapu Resort] in Vadito, N.M., will lead the pack this season, with plans to get things going on Nov. 19. Thanksgiving weekend always brings a number of resorts on line; this season, [R337R, Red River Ski Area] aims to start up the lifts on Nov. 23, the day before turkey day, while [R454R, Taos Ski Valley], [R346R, Ski Santa Fe] and [R367R, Ski Apache] all expect to welcome skiers and riders on Nov. 24.

The only resorts with a specific opening date in December are [R14R, Angel Fire Resort], which plans to roll out the carpet on Dec. 15, and [R345R, Sandia Peak], which expects to open two days later on Dec. 17.

[R446R, Sunrise Park] hopes to get enough snow to open in early December, while [R21R, Arizona Snowbowl] and [R309R, Pajarito] targeting the middle of the month for their first days of skiing and riding.