VADITO, N.M.—New Mexico will be kicking off the start of the ski season Saturday with the opening of the Sipapu resort.

Snowmaking has started at some ski areas around New Mexico, but Sipapu will be the first to open. The resort is reporting an 18-inch base.

Ski resorts in New Mexico and around the West had an unusual season last year. Early on, the snow was relatively good in New Mexico, but resorts in other Western states were forced to close early thanks to lackluster snow.

Forecasters with the National Weather Service have said it's rare to experience a third consecutive La Nina year in which weather patterns push moist air from New Mexico.

Predictions this winter are less than certain. They're calling for equal chances of normal, above-normal and below-normal snowfall.