Exclusive interview: Rick Ness talks Gold Rush return, mental health and coming up from the bottom

Rick Ness on Gold Rush
Rick Ness has returned to Gold Rush and he’s ready to rebuild everything. Pic credit: Discovery+

Rick Ness is back for Season 14 of Gold Rush, and he’s ready to get back to work.

Ahead of premiere night, Monsters and Critics spoke to Rick about his big return, and he had a lot to say about the literal mountain he’s up against this year.

Viewers know that Rick didn’t appear in Season 13 of the Discovery Channel hit due to some personal issues he was facing.

When speaking, we asked Rick how he was doing and what kept him away from the show for a full season.

Ultimately, he was away from Alaska for nearly two years of mining, and now that he’s back, it’s like starting over.

He’s got a lot of work ahead of him, and he’s starting over with just one crew member.

Rick is racing against the clock to get his equipment and crew back together, get himself out of debt, and find enough gold this season to make it worth the trip.

Rick Ness opens up about his return to Gold Rush after taking a season off

When we connected with Rick to talk Gold Rush, he was still in Yukon Territory, trying to wrap up the mining season before it got too cold to keep going.

When asked about his return to Alaska, Rick told us, “It’s been a journey, but I feel great about the decision to come back, and honestly, I’ve got a new energy for it and a new passion that I’d lost. I’m really happy to be back.”

Fans of the show are happy to have Rick back, too. We spent a whole season without him on the show as Gold Rush fans speculated about why he wasn’t there.

It turns out that Rick was going through some things, and he just wasn’t in the right mindset to mine for gold, a move that almost cost him his decade-long career.

Rick Ness talks about mental health

Now, Gold Rush viewers have a better idea of why Rick was gone and what he was dealing with, as he admitted in our chat that he was dealing with some mental health things and that it threw him off a little, as it’s not something he’d ever had to face before.

And while he made some “bad decisions and some good decisions” while away from the show, it was necessary for Rick to face his grief from the loss of his mom and regain his love for Alaska and for the search for gold.

Now, he’s back for a whole season of Gold Rush as he rebuilt his team and his equipment from nearly nothing again to show us, and himself, that he’s got what it takes to make it big in Alaskan gold country, doing what he loves.

Check out our entire interview below, and be sure to tune in for the Gold Rush Season 14 premiere.

Gold Rush airs on Fridays at 8/7c on Discovery.

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