I liked the first season of this. It demonstrated the challenged of setting up a small industry (mining). But after that, every season just got worse.
- Their season in South America should have been subtitled, “How we took these stupid gringos for a ride”.
- The last two seasons have all been manufactured drama, where the reality is mind-numbing drudgery (just like real life). Dig the dirt. Put the dirt in the washer. Wash the dirt. Look for gold. Cheer. Rinse. Repeat. Last episode, the new girl backed her truck up to a soft hillside. (Drama inducing music) “OH NO! Will she fall over the edge???” Then she dumps her dirt and drives forward. At the time that segment was filmed, I doubt she even knew there was any drama. Another time, (drama inducing music) “OH NO!! the oil pan is leaking!! Quick, go get another oil pan from the oil pan warehouse 900 miles away, and we are loosing a Kagillion dollars a day for every day we don’t have an oilpan!!”. Let’s just use some silicon goop. Fixed. Wait a sec. Didn’t I see these same guys using welders for the last 4 seasons to fix everything made of metal? Aren’t oil pans “made of metal”?
- Failure of basic economics. At the end of the day they count the gold. “Good news everyone, We mined a million bucks worth of raw gold”. But wait. that price of gold is fluctuating and is based on the price of “pure” gold. You don’t have pure gold. you need to refine it first. And as I look around, I see a few million bucks worth of heavy equipment being amortized. and a crew of 10-20 people getting paid as skilled heavy equipment operators. I see huge fuel consumption and expensive spare parts being flown in on a daily basis. Then there is the fees to the landowners. Seriously. Without some kickback from Discovery Channel for producing the film, everyone in that series looks like they are working for free.
- As I see them pulling gold out of the dirt I think to myself, “there has got to be a better way”. It looks to me as if they cannot be catching more than about 30% of the gold they are processing. Their operation is 200 year old technology or washing dirt and letting the heavier elements settle first. And they are only catching gold that is in minuscule amounts flaked off of larger veins over the centuries and washed downhill. Why aren’t they going after the veins?