‘Gold Rush: White Water’: Here’s How Kayla Johanson Won the Crew Over

by Maria Hartfield
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Discovery’s Gold Rush empire continues to attain viewership expanding to mining operations across North America. Gold Rush spin-off series, Gold Rush: White Water features father-son team “Dakota” Fred Hurt and Dustin Hurt as they face the extreme conditions of Alaska in hopes of striking it rich. In Season 5 of the reality series, a newcomer joins the Hurt crew. Her name is Kayla Johanson, and she’s the only woman on the Hurt’s mining team.

Gold Rush: White Water shows gold mining at its most extreme. The official Discovery synopsis for the series reads: “Gold miners Dakota Fred and his son Dustin are determined to make a fortune no matter the risk. But to find the big gold payout, they’ll put their lives on the line by diving deep beneath the raging waters of one of Alaska’s wildest creeks.”

The Season 5 finale titled, “Curse of the Gold Gods,” reveals the crew doing their best to work together under almost impossible circumstances. Much of the recent season centered around Kayla Johnson joining the team and doing her best to fit in which proved to be slightly difficult.

Meet Gold Rush: White Water star Kayla Johanson

Kayla Johanson is an experienced gold miner, but still had doubts about joining the show. She shared with fans that she worked to overcome her shyness on camera when filming the series. Additionally, she had to adjust to working in a group setting after previously being a one-woman show. The team wasn’t always receptive to bringing Johanson on board. However, after some hard work and genuine conversations, Kayla has made tremendous progress in her relationships on Gold Rush: White Water.

The reality TV star opened up in an interview with Monsters & Critics about how she made headway with the tight-knit group. She explained that even though she’s confident in her mining abilities, it was “pretty nerve-wracking” to join a crew of all men for Gold Rush: White Water.

“Here I am, the only girl in camp, and I’m like, I don’t have to prove anything to myself because I know what I’m capable of, but there are all these guys looking at me with all this doubt,” she said. “And I’m like, oh, I’m going to have to prove myself to all seven of these guys.”

According to Kayla, her ultimate focus was to “get the job done” despite anyone’s misgivings. She stuck to her guns so to speak and won everyone over, but it didn’t come easy. Kayla had to really prove herself and admits she “still butted heads” with some colleagues such as Scott Allen. It all proved to be worth it in the end seeing as Kayla Johanson became the first member of her crew to find gold!

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