With all of the dangers lurking around every rock at a gold mine site, it wouldn’t be surprising if the Gold Rush cast members had to overcome a few fears over the years. From tight spaces to heavy machinery, the risk of injury is almost too alarming to think about. However, for Parker Schnabel, his fear on the job site doesn’t come from the act of mining itself. Rather, it comes from the inhabitants that he meets.
As one of the biggest stars on Gold Rush, Schnabel earned himself his own spin-off special called Parker’s Trail. During the one-season special, the 27-year-old took his mine exploration efforts much farther south from the usual location in Klondike, Yukon. Instead, Schnabel packed up his team and headed down to Guyana, where he had to adjust to the humid, hot climate and foreign wildlife.
Oh yeah, and gigantic spiders.
“They were dinner plate-sized spiders,” Schnabel told Fox News. “They’re scary as s—.”
Guyana is home to a variety of large spiders and tarantulas, including the giant crab spider and the pink-toed tarantula. South American rainforests are a known habitat to the Goliath birdeater, the world’s largest spider. So, for an arachnophobe, a Guyanan mine site where you’re constantly overturning rocks and dirt is probably the last place you’d want to be.
“I’m used to bears. I’m quite fine with bears,” the Gold Rush star added. “How do you know if a spider is scared?”
Despite his fear, Schnabel and his crew never called it quits on their journey through Guyana, though the mine boss probably didn’t sleep quite so well during the trip.
‘Gold Rush’ Star Parker Schnabel Faces Even Scarier Challenges in Guyana
Thankfully, Schnabel and the rest of his Gold Rush team survived the giant spiders of Guyana without issue. However, this wasn’t even close to the greatest concern of his trip to South America. During the spin-off season, Schnabel decided to take a huge risk by wandering through tunnels that killed over 100 miners at one point.
The mine boss was fully aware of the danger of the situation, but still, he needed to uncover how exactly locals excavated the gold from the rocks. Usually, Schnabel found his gold supply on the gravel-ridden banks of the Yukon river, using backhoes to dig up the paydirt from the sides of the water. However, down in South America, there were only dry, underground sources of metal to mine.
So, with a fellow Gold Rush team member in tow, Schnabel took a tour through the dangerous tunnels. A few locals led the team through the hand-dug tunnels. Inside, dozens of bats fluttered above their heads.
Check out the precarious situation in the clip below.