Im a 20 year resident of Reno and an avid skier. You can spend $1800 plus on a Sierra Gold pass which will get you skiing at most the big 6 Tahoe Resorts plus Mammoth. I live in west Reno about 10 minutes from I-80. North shore resorts take about 45 - 55 minutes on normal days. Storm days can easily double that time. Mt Rose is 30 minutes away storm days add 10 minutes. Kirkwood a solid 90 -110 minutes, Heavenly 60-70 minutes, Mammoth 3 hours.
NW Reno is about 10-15 years old and is middle class with lots of rentals. About 45 minutes to most North Shore Resorts and still the same to the others.2-3 bedroom apts rent from $600 - $1200. 3 bedroom houses $1100 on up. This place ain't cheap. Reno doesn't really have any places to avoid, perhaps the area just east of the university and downtown Reno if I had to pick any. There are many nightclubs and also casinos for entertainment. Restaurants from local to the common chains.
Traffic is usually free flowing because you're going the opposite direction of the main traffic flow. Sundays on I-80 tend to be hectic. Weekdays, as fast as you want. Mt Rose Highway is mostly locals who have a better handle on mountain driving and adverse conditions.
Carson City is much smaller and further from North Shore resorts. About an hour to Kirkwood, 30-45 minutes to Heavenly.
As for the skiing, Mt Rose passes are $249, Sugarbowl anywhere from $219 to $700. Alpine Meadows $850?, Squaw Valley $1400?, Northstar/Sierra at Tahoe combo $250, Kirkwood $199 - $400, Heavenly $299, Mammoth $399?. I have a pass to Mt Rose and one to Sugarbowl. Usually can find $35 to $40 lift tickets mid week to almost any of the above resorts.
I came here 20 years ago to attend college and after graduation I'm still here. Not much better that I can think of for the multitude of year round recreation within an hours drive.