What You Need To Know About Gold Rush's Parker Schnabel

Reality TV star Parker Schnabel is not as well-known as fellow television personalities like Kim Kardashian or Pauly D, but he's still built a lane for himself on his Alaska-based hit show. Schnabel is one of the main stars of the Discovery Channel show called "Gold Rush."

At the start of the series, he ran the Big Nugget mine — a historic gold mine in Alaska that he inherited from his grandfather. But what made him a star and standout of the show was the fact that he became a gold mine manager at the ripe age of 16. Now he's 26 years old, and since his television debut in 2010, viewers have watched him grow before them. The once whiny teen is now a grown and responsible man — with probably a little more growing up to do. So what are some other things one should know about this avid gold miner?

Schnabel became a young millionaire

When he took over as head of operations at the Big Nugget gold mine, Schnabel was an ambitious teenager. The budding entrepreneur was also determined to find his own success in the industry he's been exposed to since he was a child. He showed that by using the money set aside for his college education and invested that into the creation of his own mining business, says Discovery. When he turned 18, he went on to Canada to dig in the Klondike region, where he currently mines. On the show, he found himself and his team continuously surpassing other miners and rivals, raking in gold worth more than any other mining team, reports Money Week.

By the time he reached 24 years old, Schnabel already mined gold that was worth $13 million. Today, his net worth stands to be an estimated $8 million, according to Wealthy Gorilla. And perhaps it's the somewhat practical lifestyle he leads that allows him to see drastic increases in his net worth. According to Money Week, Schnabel spends money, but it's not on the typical luxury items. "I don't own a boat, or any fancy cars or a fancy house. I have a big expensive sandbox instead," said Schnabel.

As a Gold Rush star, Schnabel had his own spinoff show

Parker Schnabel's age and popularity on "Gold Rush" set him apart from his other cast mates. So much that in 2017, the Discovery Network decided to focus on him by giving him his own show. The launch of "Gold Rush: Parker's Trail" helped solidify his star power as a miner. The show follows Schnabel and a small crew as they trek different parts of the world in his grandfather's honor. He explored the Klondike trails, South America, and most recently Australia in last year's season.

His grandfather John Schnabel is the biggest reason why he decided to pursue a career in gold mining, and he credits the elder Schnabel for his mining passion. "My grandfather has always been doing this since I've been around. I grew up mining with him on the mine site and running equipment ... finding gold has been my life from the time I could remember," said Schnabel to Fox News.

Parker Schnabel produced his spinoff show

When his show premiered in 2017, Parker Schnabel was only credited as a main cast member. But in 2018, he was also one of the executive producers of his show, according to IMDb. Since the second season of "Parker's Trail," Schnabel has been listed as one of the main producers. To date, he's produced 14 episodes.

The spinoff proved to be just as popular as the original show. In 2019, the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) chose the music on the cable show for its Top Television series award. Last year, the show's fourth season premiered, and it is not yet clear whether Discovery will renew or cancel the show, or if filming has resumed, per TVCancelRenew. But the popularity of both "Gold Rush" and "Parker's Trail" has been a moneymaker for Discovery, and both shows bring in strong ratings for the network, says Pop Culture.

Fans say Schnabel looks like Kylo Ren - or Adam Driver

It is not uncommon that certain people in the limelight will share a likeness to someone who is more famous. And there are quite a lot of celebrities out there who have their own celebrity doppelgängers. Some fans of "Gold Rush" are quite convinced that Parker Schnabel is Kylo Ren — a popular "Star Wars" character famously portrayed by actor Adam Driver. As a Reddit thread points out, many seem to think that the two men share a likeness with each other. And the resemblance hasn't been lost on Schnabel himself, who jokingly made light of this a few years ago on his Twitter account.

Even though he's made light of it, he doesn't consider himself to be anything like Kylo Ren. Schnabel responded to a comment from a fan who felt that the fictional character would be easier to work with. To which Schnabel says, "Kylo Ren kills a lot of people, and I haven't started that yet," he said via Discovery FaceBook.