Aussie Gold Hunters
TV documentary series
Season One: 8 x 44 minutes
Season Two: 10 x 44 minutes
Season Three: 13 x 44 minutes
Season Four: 13 x 44 minutes
In Aussie Gold Hunters we join hard-core teams of gold prospectors as they take the gamble of a lifetime and battle to strike it rich, deep in the wild west of outback Australia. Share the soaring highs and crushing lows of the gold season as our teams pursue their all-important targets braving brutal heat, punishing conditions, mechanical breakdowns and constant pressure.
The fourth season of Aussie Gold Hunters unearths the biggest gold nugget ever found on the series. The massive $200,000 nugget is a huge game changer for one of the teams. While our treasure seekers continue to scour the extreme landscapes of Western Australia, a new team from the eastern state of Victoria stake their claim in a region that’s renowned for delivering some of the largest nuggets on earth.
Returning from their record-breaking “million-dollar” season last year are the DIRT DOGS – Vern Strange, Jake Larsen and new recruits Kal & Leigh Henderson alongside mill operator Steve Bult. Last season, Vern’s resilience was tested after his best mate Leon quit and business partner Marko was forced from the team, but this year Vern takes an even bigger risk, negotiating a 50/50 partnership deal with Jake on their new $300,000 hard rock mining operation at the Piefinch lease.
Not only has Jake got his own money on the line, but Vern’s put him in charge of the entire Piefinch operation. Will Jake be capable of stepping up and managing the new team or will he face the same fate as Vern, and see key members of his team quit before reaching target? Will the Piefinch site deliver the volume of gold they need to recoup their investment? With the paydirt exhausted at their Jackson lease, will Vern find new gold ground fast enough to get their huge dry blower called Goldzilla back online? When Goldzilla’s not processing paydirt, the Dirt Dogs are saying goodbye to thousands of dollars of gold a week. Without both plants up and running, they could jeopardise their chance of reaching the team’s 200 oz season target?
Meanwhile the VICTORIA DIGGERS are on the hunt for gold in the east coast state of Victoria. Neville Perry & Mick Clark are experienced miners but this new project is their biggest ever. Working some of the richest alluvial gold ground on the planet in a region dubbed “The Golden Triangle,” their goal is to unearth nuggets the size of the world’s largest ever found; – the 72-kilo, 3.6 million dollar “Welcome Stranger.”
Fortunately they’re mining a 1.9 kilometre vein of gold at German Gully; – situated 14 kilometres from where the massive Welcome Stranger was found. But the German Gully lead was mined 160 years ago and the 12,000 miners that descended on the area back then pulled up over half a billion dollars of gold. Neville & Mick are hoping their state-of-the-art metal detecting technology and mining process will find big nuggets the miners of old missed. But having spent most of their savings buying the German Gully lead will they find gold fast enough to keep their operation running?
Seasoned husband and wife duo, GOLD GYPSIES Greg & Chris Clark, are also back, buoyed by the success of last season. These two are determined to not only survive but also thrive this year now they’ve sold their huge Taurus lease and purchased a much smaller seven-hectare site at Horseshoe Gully. The couple are confident that the twelve old mineshafts on the lease indicate that there’s still gold to be found here. Like the Victoria Diggers, they’re hoping their new state-of-the-art metal detectors will help them find gold the miners of old missed. But the Gypsies have to start the new season with a huge $20,000 excavator repair bill to pay, which uses up all their profit from last year. Will they be able to recoup the expense and still hit their 50-ounce season target? Will they make enough money this year to ensure they don’t have to go back to the city for a nine-to-five job?
In the small mining town of Kalgoorlie, TED & LECKY MAHONEY with their daughter TYLER are under pressure knowing the gold ground on the outskirts of the township is fast tunning out of surface gold. They decide to head over 2000 kms to the far north of Western Australia where they will face intense heat, the threat of bushfires and dangerous crocodiles. It’s a tough environment with Ted & Lecky starting to feel their age in increasingly trying conditions. Will the extremes of this season’s remote location be too taxing for them? Fuelling the tension is Tyler who desperately needs to find over $30,000 of gold this season to cover the costs of her new jewellery and swimsuit business.
With just one season on the hunt, THE SCRAPPERS are also back and taking the biggest gamble of their lives. Alex Stead is the team’s financier, and he’s invested $55,000 into a new ball mill so they can double their output. But with just $20,000 of cash reserves remaining, will the team get find gold before the money runs out? Will his father-in-law Eric and mates from Cornwall in England be able to put in the hard yards that are necessary to get their season off to a quick and profitable start? Alex’s wife Julie is also anxious about the new plant and lease, as it takes weeks longer than expected to get the plant up and running., Alex can’t fail to find enough gold to support Julie and their new baby. After weeks of delays will the new mill finally start delivering the ounces of gold they need every week? Does Alex have the people skills and the mining expertise to lead his team to success this season? Will the pressures of the hunt cause friction between the family members?
With new goldfields, new miners, extreme weather, venomous snakes, gold thieves, and relentless competition, the Aussie Gold Hunters need to go deeper into the desert, dig deeper and risk more if they’re to reach their ambitious targets this season.
Series Producers Roger Power, Robin Shingleton
Directors Tim Green, Claire Leeman, Stuart O’Rourke, Cian O’Clery, Justin St.Clair Lewis, Brad Cone, Steven Geddes, Wayne Young, Jonathan Levy, Mike Whyte, Dean Whiston
Series DOP Riaan Laubscher
Editors David Fosdick ASE, Simon Hill, Robin Lloyd, Bill Turner, Derek Jones, Matthew Clifton, Lynette Shingleton, Annie Storer, Shannon Cegielski, Emma Copeland, Peter Pritchard, Terry Taplin, Andrew Brinsmead, Russell Vines, Teresa Ashton-Graham
Executive Producers Andrew Ogilvie & Andrea Quesnelle
An Electric Pictures Production 2016-2019