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The Location Dustin Needs To Give Up On Gold Rush According To Fans

There's something about unique occupation-based reality TV that's made it a sure-thing formula for a variety of networks. Maybe it says something about our inevitable desire to live an experience other than our own (albeit vicariously), but the flood of series that follow Average Joes doing Not-So-Average work doesn't appear to be stopping anytime soon. History's "Rust Valley Restorers" (aka "quirky Canadians restoring antique cars"), for instance, is still going strong in Season 4, while "American Pickers" has reached "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" status with its 23rd season. Discovery+ got in on the action back in 2010, and its series about Yukon Territory miners, "Gold Rush," has received a litany of ASCAP awards (via IMDb) over the course of its 12-season run. Though a 13th season has yet to be officially announced, it certainly seems likely given its immense popularity.

Like any niche reality TV series worth its salt, "Gold Rush" runs on the larger-than-life personalities of its central cast members, and in the case of the mining series, that includes part-time construction worker and legacy miner Dustin Hurt. Hurt's complicated relationship with his father and his fear of the ever-looming threat of bankruptcy (as outlined in his Discovery bio) make him wholly relatable, while his short fuse provides the series with an added element of drama. 

Unsurprisingly, fans of "Gold Rush" and its spin-offs congregating on subreddits dedicated to the franchise have thoughts about the Hurt, including ones related to what mining sites he needs to get over, as a recent thread reveals.

Fans say McKinley Creek is tapped out

On "Gold Rush: White Water," Dustin Hurt takes control of his own crew. Since the series' pilot, audiences have watched the miners attempt to pluck gold from the icy waters of McKinley Creek, a location whose more accessible veins have been tapped out, forcing the crew into the more dangerous points of the site (via Discovery+ Facebook). While the creek provides the series with drama, it's yet to provide any gold, and many fans are calling for Dustin to let go of the ghost. 

"Dustin has proven that there isn't a huge payoff waiting anywhere on McKinley Creek," wrote Redditor u/mudpupper on the r/goldrush subreddit, adding, "It's time to move on." Reddit user u/tstrader79 agreed with the location's futility, saying, "They'd be further ahead bottling the creek water and selling it," — a suggestion only slightly tweaked by u/xBAMx48, who suggested they give zip line tours. 

Many felt the refusal to give up on a fruitless location was evidence of an ulterior motive. "Watching ['White Water'] is like watching ['Curse of Oak Island']," wrote u/QuiJon70, explaining their analogy as follows: "You know nothing is there, and you just cant believe week-to-week any sane adult thinks [there] is and then you realize they don't; they just make more money playing make-believe." This point was supported by many, with one theorizing that the cast was never meant to find gold. "They don't mine enough gold in any season to pay their expenses," u/nostromorises wrote, adding that "all these folks working on McKinley Creek are getting a paycheck from Discovery to mine content for a television show, and nothing more." In that respect, at least, the site's been wildly successful.