Here some of my thoughts on the airline with the snowcaped peaks...
Reno Air (1992-1999) was by all means one of the successes of the post-deregulation era. Although they did eventually fail, they survived thrived during the cut-throat industry climate of the 1993-6 range.
From the start, QQ made plenty of good decisions, Excepting the short-lived Reno Air Express, QQ made the right decision by employing a young, single-type fleet. They chose a low fare business model, but did a nice job of capitalized upon a few "easy" extras such as assigned seating and an affordable First Class cabin. Additionally, they aligned themselves with the mighty AAdvantage Frequent Flyer program very early on.
But, Reno Air had one very fundamental flaw---their route system. It was poorly focused, and was not engineered to fully benefit from American's feed.
Reno Air seemed to jump into markets they felt were underserved without ever analyzing what impact this would have to the rest of their operations. As a result, their route network became very poorly focused, with three minihubs all within 400 miles of each other--San Jose, Reno and Las Vegas.
San Jose was mostly limited to flights to SoCal and Nevada (and later on, flights to Seattle/Portland). Along with LAX, this was their main link to American's route system.
From Reno they flew to the Pac NW, and even nonstop to Anchorage and Vancouver for a brief while. They also flew east to Denver, Detroit and Chicago.
From Las Vegas they to LA, Reno and San Jose, as well as to Colorado Springs, Tucson, Oklahoma City and Albuquerque.
Reno also started a few flights which were definite misfits in their route system. In 1996-7, they flew Seattle to Chicago, as well as LA to San Francisco.
Worst of all, they had this "Gulf Coast Flyer" for a while in 1997 and possibly into 1998. They sent an aircraft over to Gulfport/Biloxi and initiated one flight a day to Atlanta and St. Petersburg. This was totally a satellite route system, and I'm sure that the hand of a major airline was involved in this experiment. Reno Air execs would have to have been crazy to do this otherwise.
Reno Air did make money for a while, and their service was quite good back in the early-to-mid 90s. They had killer on-time performance and friendly employees. Coach was nothing special, with no-frills and average legroom. However, they made it very easy to fly First Class. You could upgrade for $20 on most flights and $40 on longer routes. They had 20 seats up front, so upgrades were frequently possible, and First Class received a light meal on most flights.
To make a long story short, Reno's route system did't work out, and they began to lose money. QQ First Class gradually got more and more expensive, and the snacks disappeared. Delays became common, and aircraft maintenance deteriorated (it's a wonder they didn't have an accident). American finally decided to put Reno out of its misery, and the the last QQ flight was completed 8/31/99.