'Gold Rush' Dominates Cable Ratings After 'Parker's Trail' Return, Catch an Exclusive Season Preview

Gold Rush has had a serious surge in ratings, as the Discovery mining franchise has dominated cable ratings with now four of the top five cable series among people ages 25 to 54, and men 25 to 54 after the strong return of Gold Rush: Parker's Trail Season 4 Friday, March 13.

According to Neilsen TV ratings, the Parker's Trail premiere came in with a 1.28 rating in the key demographic, as an average of 2.58 million total viewers, a 27 percent increased from the previous season, making it the highest rated episode of the series in nearly two years and driving Discovery to the top 3 most social primetime cable networks, excluding news.

In a PopCulture.com exclusive preview of Friday's all-new episode, mine boss Parker Schnabel's team explores the Australian wilderness looking for promising signs of gold. What initially looks like a bunk mission quickly turns around upon the discovery of a massive gold nugget, a clue that this season could be a promising one for the Schnabel team.

The young mine boss' season might be off to a promising start, but there's endless things that can happen for the operation. Prior to last season of Gold Rush, Schnabel told PopCulture exclusively on a mining trip to the Yukon that anyone who decides to make their living as a gold miner is "a little crazy."

"When I first came to the Yukon and started to learn the ground and what we were doing and figuring out the processes, I didn't know how far we'd get," he said of his success. "It's a very hard business to really grow and build and maintain efficiency. And so, I didn't really ... I didn't think that we'd make it to the point where we were doing, you know, like over 1,000 oz. a month, which is what we did last year."

What will Australia hold for Schnabel and his team?

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Gold Rush: Parker's Trail airs on Discovery Fridays at 8 p.m. ET, following immediately after by Dave Turin's Lost Mine at 9 p.m. ET.

Photo credit: Discovery