(I wouldn't think anyone would sleep outside in the snow, but a penpal of mine in British Columbia says he's seen homeless people sleeping on the sidewalk in the snow!)
Yes, making money online is not a great idea.
The thing is, you can't start at the top, you gotta start at the bottom. There are 'careers' you can get with no training or experience. I worked at a specialty machine shop that hired kids right off the street. If you took the job, you'd spend a month or two sweeping and mopping, because it was always the newest guy who did that, but soon enough you'd be operating a machine. If you had the curiosity, you would learn how to set the machine up, program it, maybe take some community college classes, etc., and by then you'd be making pretty good money. A surprisingly small percentage of guys had the patience.
You can make a pretty good living these days with a 2-year degree. There are a lot of 'technician' jobs, or you could get something in the health care field and they need those people everywhere, even Mt. Shasta. California has a great community college system (I wish it was cheaper though. It was free when i went.)
When you're young is when you don't need as much money. I was poor when I was young but I still had a great life, going places and doing things with friends. Little by little I got more and more money as I got more experience and better jobs (and harder jobs).
In terms of long-term opportunity, you have a MUCH better chance in LA.