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The Shady Reason People Keep Disappearing From Gold Rush

For 12 seasons, the Discovery Channel's "Gold Rush" has provided viewers with an inside look at the high risks and, sometimes higher rewards of gold mining. The show follows some family-operated gold mining operations as they try to strike it rich in harsh areas such as Alaska, Colorado, and the Yukon. "Gold Rush" has proven to be a hit, even producing several spin-off series such as "Gold Rush: Winter's Fortune" and the upcoming "Hoffman Family Gold."

It's inspiring to witness a famed old Wild West profession showcased in a modern world. But "Gold Rush" makes it clear that even today, mining for gold isn't an easy task for its cast, and all is not always well on the show. In addition to rough battles with Mother Nature, producer problems, and reports of paltry pay, "Gold Rush" has a habit of some of its cast just plain disappearing. While some miners like Todd Hoffman leave the show simply to pursue other opportunities, there are some who vanish from "Gold Rush" on less than great terms.

Working on Gold Rush can easily make the cast reach their boiling point

The cast of "Gold Rush" deals with numerous stresses, including having to endure mistakes that can set back a crew in both costly amounts of time and money and coping with crew tensions that can explode into physical violence. The ills of being on "Gold Rush" can easily outweigh any potential thrills, which is why it's probably common to see your favorite cast member suddenly disappear from the show. For instance, after seven seasons, Dave Turin made his exit from "Gold Rush" because he got into a fistfight with crew member Trey Poulson — according to Turin, he couldn't keep working with someone who "uses his fist rather than words."

Yet the strongest example of someone reaching their boiling point and making their abrupt exit from "Gold Rush" occurred during a Season 10 episode (via YouTube). In the episode, Parker Schnabel gets into a tense situation with his crew foreman Dean after some miscommunication and miscalculations while prepping a site for digging. The mistake costs his crew time they simply don't have. On top of that, Dean and Parker spent much of the season with tensions high between the two, as Parker felt Dean wasn't living up to expectations. 

Parker, clearly upset, tells Dean to meet him back at his office to talk. Instead, his foreman goes back to his trailer and tells Parker that "Well, I know what you wanna say to me, and I have nothing to say to you." Dean grabs his family, receives his last paycheck, and leaves the site behind for good. It's unknown if Parker intended to fire Dean, but either way, clearly, the foreman had enough of the stressful "Gold Rush" life to disappear from the show forever.