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Gold Rush Takes Way Longer To Film Than You Think

Discovery's reality series "Gold Rush" has been giving viewers an inside look at the gold mining process for just about 12 seasons now, and fans eat it up. In fact, the series took the number one spot of all television series for male viewers back in December 2020 (per Discovery).

The series follows multiple family-owned businesses as they travel through the Pacific Northwest region in the hopes of making a big fortune on gold mining. The mining crews have to take big risks to make a bigger payoff, and year after year, crews encounter new technology, competition, and challenges they must tackle — all in the name of business.

Season 12 of "Gold Rush" has already seen plenty of reality-driven excitement. Mining legend Tony Beets enters the season after having spent $5 million on new mining equipment and hopes to pan in 9,000 ounces, making it his biggest season yet. Fan-favorite youngster miner Parker Schnabel also hopes to rack in big and makes a huge investment. Meanwhile, all of the "Gold Rush" crews must compete to find the best mining location when usable land is becoming smaller and smaller (via Discovery).

With so much mining drama going on in just one season of "Gold Rush," you may wonder just how long it actually takes to film a season of the hit show.

The mining season of Gold Rush takes most of the year

In order to fill their pans with money-making gold, the crews of "Gold Rush" have to devote a ton of time to the mining process, which, according to HowStuffWorks, is quite extensive. First, mining companies have to prospect a rocky location where there's enough gold concentration to be considered profitable. Then they have to determine how to go about mining depending on the size of the gold deposits. Mining crews then have to extract the small amounts of gold from the large amounts of dirt and rocks they mine, and the gold gets refined and hopefully turns into a nice profit for the miners.

With such a lengthy process involved, you may wonder how long it actually takes to film a season of "Gold Rush." Luckily, Redditor u/bcwildie, who claimed they have spent a few years with the "Gold Rush" teams, provided some insight. u/Bcwildie wrote, "A few of the crew usually go up mid March to dewinterize everything and get camp ready. The rest of show up around the end of March/early April. Then we stay until about mid October, later if the weather holds and camp doesn't freeze so we can do more stripping."

So, it looks like the cast and crew behind "Gold Rush" is pretty busy for most of the year, but given that gold mining is their livelihood, it makes perfect sense.