Gold Rush Alaska Recap

A live blog- sort of.

I watched & blogged "live style" Friday's episode of the Discovery Channel's “reality” show about the gold mining Hoffman family from Oregon which is filmed at Porcupine Creek, which is in Haines, and this season stars locals Parker Schnabel (17) and his grandfather John (92). Full disclosure: I am not unbiased. John sold us our lumberyard, and Parker’s parents are my daughter JJ’s Godparents. Anyway, I figured I’d write about the show like they do on real blogs—so here’s my stab at it.


Todd Hoffman: “I love this country,” and something about how great America is. Wait, he’s heading to the Klondike gold fields outside Dawson City, that is in the Yukon. The Yukon is in Canada.

7:05 At Porcupine, Dakota Fred removes the shaker. Heavy equipment makes me snooze. Give me Parker & John or the Frickin’ Hoffmans. Fred: “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link.” Honestly.  We know it’s going to snap. Yup. Just did. But nobody’s leg “broke.”

7:10 Parker!  “It’s working, they’re getting bigger.” A nugget. Go Parker. Love that kid. Dimples, smiles, articulate. The best of Haines.

7:15 The bearded trucker is classic northern color. The guy next door. News flash from Jack: “It’s a do or die situation.”

7:19 Jack leaves! Oh no, he’s my favorite Hoffman. Let me guess, he’ll return after a family meeting.

7:20 Phew, back to Parker, and Gary Grogan. Another nice guy. Parker looks just like the picture in the bank of his grandfather in the display featuring local veterans. John was just a kid in WW II.  Parker sounds like his dad, Roger.

7:25 They are praying in Hoffmanville again. It’s bad, really bad. A man hug should be coming soon, and a flag raising. “This is our last chance.” They head off to find Jack. (This is what they call narrative tension in my fiction writing classes.)

“If Jack and Todd can’t settle their differences this could be the end of the road.” Actually, without Jack “I know what I’m doin’” Hoffman, it may be the end of the TV contract. Can you say Porcupine Parker? The boy is a star. (Plus, he really is just what you see. Nancy must be so proud, even if she and his father did not really think this was such a hot idea, putting their son on TV. )

7:26 More grinding muddy machines and white toothed Dakota Fred. Snooze.

7:28 “May be a little gold in there," says our boy Parker with a deep dimple. You betcha. Where's John? I'd like to see him.

7:29 Back in the Klondike with the Hoffmans. Doom and despair. Where’s Jack?  “Time is running out.”

Jack is back! Tears. Dad dying story. The meaning of life moment. It’s all about the family not the gold.

7:40 The Hoffman’s “season is slipping away.” Wait, already? Isn’t it this just the third show? 

7:41 “This looks frickin' sweet.” Todd on Jack’s dragging of the wash plant.

7:42 In Porcupine. A bunch of machines. Hey, did they say they are going to the “local hardware store?” Would that be ours? Will my family be on TV?  But then Parker just gives Fred the part he needs. But I forgive him because he’s wearing a Haines Glacier Bears Booster Club shirt. I love Parker.

7:48 Parker is back cleaning out the wash plant.  “In one week we have almost gotten half of what the Hoffmans got all season.” Go Parker!

7:50 Back to the theme from last season, the  “Hoffmans need a 1000 dollars a day in gold or their season may be over” threat. Are they facing, as they did every hour last year, “financial ruin”? Uh oh, Dad Jack is driving an excavator again. “What the frick?” Todd and Jack are at it again.

7:52 Should I buy Chip the Dove men’s care soap to prevent dry skin? Does he have dry skin? Oh, it's a commercial.

7:55 “Time is running out” for the Hoffmans.

7:56 Dakota Fred pans gold. Holy “bleep”! They find some. 

7:58 Parker stops by. With a lot of gold. “That nugget’s a third of an ounce.” Love Parker’s basketball shorts and white socks. 

7:59 Back in Canada, Todd’s kids find a little gold. Jack: “Basically this is our last chance.” Oh no! “If there’s no gold here, me and my boy may be stuck in the Yukon.” Well, at least they’ll have free healthcare and that great public pool in Whitehorse.

Over for another week.

(This is my Dad, Papa Bob, last summer at the Schnabel's  Big Nugget mine.)












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