One of the most popular TV shows in the history of the Discovery Channel is Gold Rush. I am very late to the party but I must say that my attention has been piqued. For quite some time I saw people tweeting about Parker Schnabel and the Gold Rush show but I never tuned in. That changed in February 2015 as I decided to give it a try. In essence, social media and recommendations from friends were the reason I tuned into the show. Here is one of the more popular tweets by Parker Schnabel:
Classic Cheeseman- “with pans like that we can make more money panning” #GoldRush
— Parker Schnabel (@goldrush_parker) January 24, 2015
Although I have never been gold mining I have quite a bit of knowledge as to how the process works and how to profit from physical gold. I was very interested in the commodities boom during the mid 2000s when gold and silver skyrocketed. Although the price of gold and silver has come down drastically since the peak in August of 2011 there are still many investors that see the value in a physical currency. I was a “gold bug” that would watch the prices of gold stocks like Goldcorp, Glamis Gold, Barrick Gold and that high riser Yumana Gold. Even though they have come off their tops looking at stock charts of gold and silver miners is quite interesting to me. That makes the show Gold Rush even more intriguing as we now get to see how some of these individuals make money off mining for gold in California.
How Old is Parker Schnabel?
This is the first question most people are going to ask when tuning into the show Gold Rush for the first time. Parker is 20 years old so he runs a multi million dollar “company” before he can even legally purchase an alcoholic beverage. That is hard to believe. Throughout the series I would imagine we get to see the maturing and growing up of Parker Schnabel. Over the next few weeks and months I may go back and watch some “On Demand” episodes of this show just to see how Parker has changed over time.
Does Parker Schnabel Have a Girlfriend?
Being so new to this show, I know nothing about Parker’s love life. He is a 20 year old guy that has plenty of money so I am certain he does not have problems getting attention from the ladies. That said, he does have a lot on his plate and likely does not have a lot of free time to devote to the dating scene. The gold season is not year round so maybe this time of year he is single and ready to mingle for the college girls in his area. If you know anything about Parker Schnabel’s dating life please feel free to leave a comment below.
Caterpillar and Volvo Gold Mining Equipment
Having grown up in a very rural part of the United States I knew many people that owned a Caterpillar or Volvo piece of construction equipment. Until I got to college I had no idea how much this type of equipment costs. A Caterpillar D10 Bulldozer costs about $160,000. If you know someone that owns a company that has around 10 or 15 dozers it is safe to say they have quite a bit of money invested in the business. Throughout the show we learn a lot about the different types of Volvo and Cat mining equipment that helps these teams and individuals extract gold from the dirt. This is something that is much more difficult than just “mining for gold” which is what we see on the east coast. This is a multi million dollar venture that takes years to develop.
Main Pay Gold vs Side Pay Gold
During the February 13th, 2015 episode of Gold Rush on the Discovery Channel we learned about Main Pay gold vs Side Pay gold. In essence, Main Pay gold is more lucrative because there is more of it in the ground underneath water such as a river or pond. During the show Gene Cheeseman has to redirect a river so the team can mine for gold in an area that is not frozen. In the Scribner Creek camp of the Klondike it has gotten very cold and the ground is frozen. Below is a Vine video showing the team redirecting Sulphur Creek:
When all was said and done Parker Schnabel had 215 ounces of gold which equates to about $250,000. This is one of the largest amounts of gold his team has extracted. I am glad one of the first episodes I saw was a successful one for the Scribner Creek crew.
In the preview for upcoming episodes we learn that Parker Schnabel only has a few more weeks to get as much gold as possible out of the ground. Unfortunately, one of his backhoes breaks down which causes major problems. It will be interesting to see how much time is wasted trying to get their equipment back online.
Speaking of equipment, I noticed that Parker Schnabel drives a large black/grey Ford F350 truck yet Subaru is the main advertiser of the show. There was even an adorable golden lab Subaru TV commercial that was aired during the show I watched. This was the first time I have seen that particular Subaru TV commercial. I would love to know how much Subaru is paying for all the advertising during this show that gathers around 3.5 for 4 million viewers. I will check the TV ratings and update this page throughout the season.
Getting to 2000 Ounces of Gold
During the February 20th, 2015 episode we see the Scribner Creek crew struggle to get the over burden away from the main pay gold. Unfortunately, the Volve 700 excavator breaks down and the team has to wait for a new part. Ironically, the Volvo 700 breaks down for one of the other crews on the Gold Rush show as well. This particular episode did not feature a lot of Parker Schnabel but we did learn how much gold his team needs to get to 2000.
When he weighs the gold he has it ends up only being 117 ounces which is worth around $140,000. He is still about 150 ounces short of his 2,000 mark and there is less than a week to go before the season will be over. As we move forward with the last two episodes of the season we will learn if Parker Schnabel and his team can get to the 2,000 ounce mark they have been talking about during the entire season of Gold Rush. Do you think he will make it? Also, do you think anyone will leave Parker Schnabel as things get testy at the end of the season?
Gold Rush 2015 TV Ratings
I knew this was one of the most watched TV shows in the history of the Discovery Channel but who would have guessed this many people would be watching TV on a Friday night. Here are the numbers:
February 13th, 2015 – 4,654,000 viewers
February 6th, 2015 – 4,632,000 viewers
January 30th, 2015 – 4,590,000 viewers
January 23rd, 2015 – 4,694,000 viewers
January 16th, 2015 – 4,574,000 viewers
January 9th, 2015 – 4,215,000 viewers
January 2nd, 2015 – 4,440,000 viewers
How Much is an Ounce of Gold Worth?
Below you will find a three year chart of the price of gold that will automatically update each trading day. In February 2015 the price of gold is around $1200 an ounce but that can change quickly.
Parker Schnabel and his team want the price of spot gold to increase quickly, especially when they are at the end of a season. Remember that this season of Gold Rush was taped several months ago but it never hurts gold miners to see the price of gold increase at a steady clip. Notice how much the price of gold has come off since its highs. In 2011 the price of gold was as high as $1950 an ounce. Those were the good days for gold miners.