Check out the rental places in Reno. If any of them rent a Subaru, I'd go with that. I'm up at my family's place on Donner Lake often during the winter riding squaw and the other north shore resorts. Subarus are AWD and the CHP are generally looking for the "M+S" logo and the tread on them. As for resorts, I love squaw, but also hit up Alpine Meadows with my cousins who live in Reno. Never been to Homewood yet, but Mt. Rose is great if there is fresh snow and the whole mountain is open. Northstar is also a fun bet on a weekday (less crowds) if there is snow. Not sure however how the snow is going to be early December. I normally go up around Jan-Feb.