we have been going to Dodge Ridge for many years. It's close to the bay area (3.5 hr drive) and the road is always open. on dec-29-2006, it was "the first day of the season" for many-many-many people. it was the first time we parked so far that we needed the shuttle. the line to the cashiers and the rental was long (20 min), but I was pleasantly surprised to find brand new boots and skiis for my rental. the line for lunch was horrible (over an hour). lines to all lifts were long (from 5 min. of the lower-mountain lifts, to 15-20 min. for the triple-chair to the top). the staff is very welcoming even when the crowds are filling the place. bottom line, great little resort, but try to avoid it on busy dates.