Entertainment The Untold Truth of 'Gold Rush: Haulin' Pay' Star

The Untold Truth of ‘Gold Rush: Haulin’ Pay’ Star


• Rick Ness is an American musician and reality TV star, known for his participation in the Discovery Channel TV series ‘Gold Rush’.
• He grew up in Escanaba, Michigan and moved to Rhinelander, Wisconsin with his mother in 200•
• He was a musician in the underground music scene with 357 String Band until 2011.
• He joined “Gold Rush” in the show’s second season after being invited by one of the main stars, Parker Schnabel.
• He is currently worth over $3 million.


Rick Ness is an American musician and reality TV star, whose ticket to fame was his participation in the Discovery Channel TV series ‘Gold Rush’.

Early life and family

Richard “Rick” Ness Jr. was born on March 5, 1981 in Escanaba, Michigan, USA, to parents Richard “Big Rick” Ness Sr. and Judy Marie Bedard; he has a twin brother, Randy. When his parents divorced in 2003, he accompanied his mother to move to Rhinelander, Wisconsin. His brother chose to stay in Escanaba, where he worked in the family construction business.

His paternal grandfather started Roy Ness Contracting & Sales in 1947, formerly called Ness Brothers Contracting when Roy’s other brothers were still involved in the business, but when they moved on to other interests, Rick’s grandfather carried on with Randy, hence the name change. His father, “Big Rick”, is currently the co-owner and vice president of the company, and Rick’s brother is the store manager and chief mechanic.

Shortly after Rick and his mother arrived in Rhinelander, his mother opened a sandwich shop called “Subby’s.” She later worked as a secretary and corrections officer with the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department.


Little else is known about Rick’s level of education, except that he played some college football until he suffered a head injury, which ultimately ended his burgeoning football career.


After recovering from his soccer injury, Rick turned to music playing upright bass in the underground music scene with 357 String Band, formed with Derek Dunn on guitar/vocals, Billy Cook on mandolin/dobro, Jayke Orvis on mandolin/vocals, and Joseph Huber on banjo/violin. The band created a unique sound, using only stringed instruments. They started playing in 2004, touring several cities around the country and even going international.

Rick Ness

They released three albums, namely “Ghost Town” (2006), “Fire and Hall” (2008) and “Lighting from the North” (2010). They broke up in 2011 when Joe Huber decided to leave the group due to artistic differences.

While most of his former bandmates continued their music careers as solo artists, Rick became a reality TV star through the TV series “Gold Rush”, formerly titled “Gold Rush: Alaska”, which aired on the Discovery Channel. He joined the cast for the second season after being invited by one of the series’ main stars, Parker Schnabel. They met when he was still a traveling musician, nine months prior to the invitation during one of their stops at the South East Alaskan State Fair.

Parker, having learned that Rick was familiar with heavy machinery, as he worked in the construction industry for the family business in the past, believed Rick would be a great addition to his gold mining crew.

Parker’s decision turned out to be a smart one, as Rick was able to provide invaluable help to his crew. Rick started out as an excavator and later became a rock truck operator. His proven diligence allowed him to demonstrate his skills as a loader, bulldozer and grader. His hard work paid off, as he was promoted to foreman by Parker in the fifth season.

By the ninth season in 2018/19, he was promoted to Mine Boss and given his own mining squad. He encountered several problems, including mutiny from his crew, but later managed to get the crew going and was able to finish strong.

The 10e season of the series ended before the Covid19 pandemic broke out worldwide. However, filming the 11e season was halted due to the quarantine restrictions, and even if the miners were considered essential workers, the production crew didn’t fit that category. The crew who filmed the episodes were stuck in Britain due to travel restrictions. As soon as Canada eases the total lockdown, the recordings will continue.

Private life

Rick is quite private when it comes to his personal life, but he is currently single as there are no reports of him being married or engaged. Many viewers are curious about his dating, but his life as a gold digger prevented him from fully interacting with other people.

His mother battled brain cancerand spent most of his time taking care of her before she passed away in 2018.

However, fans of “Gold Rush” quickly noticed the great chemistry between him and Karla Ann, one of the gold mining crew in charge of his Gold Room on the show. When she joined the reality show, she belonged to a different mining group, but when she returned for another season, fans wondered why she was suddenly in Rick’s group. It was assumed they were dating, but Rick clarified on another show that Karla is like a sister he never had, and they treat each other like family.

Posted by Rick Ness on Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Interesting fact and rumours

  • His father, Big Rick appeared on his son’s TV show, and went out of his way to help Rick’s group reach the show’s mining goal of 1,000 ounces of gold, offering his services to his son’s first mining expedition as a mining boss. Big Rick’s expertise in handling people and heavy machinery helped considerably.
  • While filming season 8 of his TV show, he chose to go home to tend to his mother’s illness.
  • One of Rick’s ultimate celebrity crushes way back in high school was Neve Campbell, and he stumbled across her when he watched the movie “Skyscraper”.
  • It was rumored that part of Rick’s crew has not been paid by the Discovery Channel and the reason was political differences. It was said that some of them are not even returning for season 11.


Rick is 1.80 m tall and weighs about 69 kg. He is white and athletically built; he has brown hair and brown eyes, also has a beard and tattoos on his right arm up to his shoulders.

Net value

Authoritative sources estimates Rick’s net worth as of June 2020 to be over $3 million.

Shreya Christinahttp://ukbusinessupdates.com
Shreya has been with ukbusinessupdates.com for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider ukbusinessupdates.com team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

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