Yukon Gold

 
Gold mining reality features rough-and-tough guys.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The series highlights the importance of hard work, dedication, and working as a team.

Positive role models

Miners are motivated by both greed and the need to financially survive. They are hard workers, but occasionally younger miners lack initiative.

Violence

Some rough housing (punching, shoving, playful slapping) is visible between miners. Exhaustion and frustration sometimes leads to yelling. References are made to using rifles to settle differences.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

Words like "hell" and "jackass" audible; curses "s--t," "f--k" are bleeped.

Consumerism

Apple computers and GMC trucks are visible.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Cigarette smoking and beer drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that outdoor reality series Yukon Gold contains lots of strong language, plus smoking, beer drinking, and arguing. Rough-and-tough guys argue, wrestle, and talk about settling differences with guns. Older tweens can probably handle most of the content, but probably won't be clamoring to see it.

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What's the story?

The reality documentary YUKON GOLD takes a look at the high-risk world of modern-day gold mining in the Canadian Yukon. It stars newbie gold miner "Big Al" McGregor, who is camped at Indian River, prospector-turned-miner Bernie Kreft, and his sons Jarret and Justin, who have mining rights at McDame Creek, and best friends Ken Foy and Guillaume Brodeur, who are digging at Moose Creek. Mining at Sulphur Creek is father and son team Marty and Karl Knutson. Working long hours to take advantage of the 24-hour sunlight that shines during the short summer mining season, the teams build, operate, and maintain large pieces of digging and sluicing equipment designed to uncover enough gold to pay their bills and see them through the winter season. It's hard work and a major gamble, but for those lucky enough to find it, the payouts make it worthwhile.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

The Canadian Yukon Gold offers a look at the world of contemporary gold mining, which, if successful, can lead to millions of dollars in earnings thanks to the current price of gold. It also highlights how miners are still making the same sacrifices they made hundreds of years ago in hopes of striking it rich, including cashing in the last of their savings to purchase equipment and hire labor, and leaving their families behind.  

It's not the most action-packed of shows, and much of the drama comes from dealing with broken machinery and settling disagreements between frustrated miners when things go wrong. But it does offer a reasonable picture of what gold mining is like today. Fans of this kind of Dirty Jobs reality entertainment will probably find something here.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the appeal of reality shows that feature people doing dirty, risky, or dangerous jobs. Why are they so appealing? Is what you see on these shows what really happens on the job? Or is it made more dramatic to be more entertaining?

  • Why do people risk money, time, and even relationships to try to make money? Is it need? Desperation? A need to rise to a challenge? Would this be something that you or your family would be willing to do?

TV details

Cast:Al McGregor, Bernie Kreft, Ken Foy
Network:National Geographic Channel
Genre:Reality TV
Topics:Science and nature
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:Streaming

This review of Yukon Gold was written by

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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