Dan, don't know a lot about reno, but I do know its very close to a boat load of cali classics. I suspect that most of it would be day trip territory, but you are close to the yuba and feather drainages, which have excellent whitewater.
Also it seems like cali has a pretty long season if you are willing to drive. Cali gets rain in the spring (march/april) and the snowmelt comes in the summer (april-june) and there are several releases that allow folks to boat in the late summer.
I've seen some writeups by Stephen Wright... He lives in Reno and seems to be paddling a ton of cali runs while CO is bone dry. I don't think pro kayakers tend to live in places that are crappy for kayaking.
Also, Cali is the promised land... there are girls in bikinis as the put ins and takeouts, the rivers are incredible, and the drops are fantastic. Just watch out for the poison oak.
One downside may be the afterwork options. I think the front range has it great for afterwork options when the season is on. Not sure how the afterwork is in reno outside the playpark.