Friday night’s “Gold Rush Alaska” behind the scenes’ special opened up a window to what the Hoffman’s camp really looks like and that’s crowded. While only the six-man crew show up on “Gold Rush Alaska” episodes, there’s plenty more where the camera’s not pointing. While the dangers of the Klondike are somewhat explained during the regular episodes or this reality show, the scope of many life-threatening hazards show up in this behind the scenes episode.
Discovery Channel needs 100+ crew to film “Gold Rush Alaska.” The crew’s scattered among the three camps that the show follows, the Hoffman’s, Dakota Fred’s camp and the grandfather and grandson team’s Big Nugget Mine. Wherever the miners go, the film crew must follow. Needless to say, getting stuck in such a remote part of the world with lack of modern-day amenities starts to play on people’s nerves.
It’s easy to see that the miners find the camera crew a burden at times, as they are often in the way of the men working. The “Gold Rush” miners don’t take any slack from the camera men, as they won’t wait for the camera’s to get set-up or even in place before they start work.
The mud, that’s a result of the thawing permafrost, is more like quick sand. Much time’s spent plucking the Discovery Channel crew out of the mud after they’re knee-deep with no way out. One scary shot pointed out a camera man, who’s stuck in mud up to his knees, as sitting prey for a bear that’s shown in the distance. Both black bears and grizzly bears often walk near the camp. Bear repellant and air horns help ward them off and required items for the Discovery Channel crew to carry at all times while filming.
When the behind the scenes cameras scan the Hoffman’s Klondike claim, many more trailers, used for living quarters for the Discovery crew, appear than what’s usually in the background of a regular episode of the show. The usual background of just a few trailers for the gold miners is what “Gold Rush Alaska” episodes carefully film. This adds to the illusions needed when depicting the remoteness of the area. This brings more authenticity to the show instead of showing the small little city of trailers used for the film crew.
While Todd and his crew are in the construction business or some other type of tough outdoors work by trade, their transition into the remote Alaskan wilderness came about easier than the Discovery Channel crew. Many of the guys filming the show just walked off the streets of London, the city they call home. The culture shock becomes a topic of conversation among the Discovery crew, as it’s not an easy place to live.
The Discovery Channel’s crew shares the Hoffman’s excitement when they finally find an ample amount of gold, as last week’s episode showed Todd and the guys pull $4000 worth of gold out of the ground after one day’s work. There’s plenty more where that came from according to the test results of the drilling. This is where next week’s “Gold Rush Alaska” will pick up.