We visted Donner Ski Ranch 2 days in a row a few days after Christmas. My 11 year old son wanted to learn to snowboard. He took a private lesson and snowboarded for the entire time we were there. He was treated like a VIP, the instructor was great and he was snowboarding in no time. He was riding the lifts to the top of the mountain by the end of the 1st day. I thought all the staff was extremely helpful, there were no long lift lines and the magic carpet area was great for beginners to learn to ski/snowboard. The lodge was cozy with a fireplace and the food was decent. Our son is begging us to go back...he LOVED it.