It all started many years ago when Buzzard Massie got the fever for gold. He turned that fever into a great gold association that is still up and running today. It was Buzzard that got the ball rolling for the GPAA or Gold Prospectors Association of America. Things were progressing nicely until the 1990’s; when the untimely death of Buzzard Massie sent things back a bit. Lucky for the GPAA that Buzzard had two sons and two sons willing to take the gold club to the next level.
Tom Massie is the face you can see most often on the Outdoor Channel; which the Massie family owns and operates. Tom will take his wife and kids out on outdoor adventures looking for gold and these shows are still airing today on the Outdoor Channel. Tom gives viewers a chance to see them looking for gold, teaches tips and tricks about finding gold, and will go outside the lines to entertain in other non-gold ways. These gold shows are nothing like the fishing shows you see on TV. You know how the fisherman goes out and will land a nice fish every 5 minutes. These gold shows don’t show a whole lot of gold finding and mostly will talk about the history of the areas they’re currently in. It can be a bit frustrating to those that want to see gold being found, but it’s the best thing gold prospectors have for television viewing and trying to cure their gold fever. The Gold Fever gold shows hosted by Tom Massie usually last an hour and it’s good for beginners to watch. Another gold show comes on the Outdoor Channel and this one last 30 minutes and is basically a program advertising the adventures at Cripple River Mining Camp in Alaska. People can choose to visit Cripple River 6 weeks out of each year. They allow guests to search for gold for the entire month of July and then the first 2 weeks of August. You can select a 1 week visit or multiple weeks if you choose. Each trip ends with a gold draw and the biggest nugget found that week by the workers at Cripple River will get rewarded to the person that draws number 1. These numbers go up depending on the number of guests and the lowest numbers result in the most gold. The gold visitors find on their own, they can keep and take back home with them.
Perry Massie is the other son of Buzzard Massie. He’s the CEO of the Outdoor Channel and participates in a lot of the shows that advertise for the mining camp in Alaska. He seems a bit more tougher than his brother Tom Massie and this is very evident on TV. No one will ever get Steve Irwin’s (Crocodile Hunter) bravery confused with the bravery or work ethic as Tom Massie. Perry is a little different and he’s more of a man’s man; if you know what I mean. Both brothers have did a good job with carrying on the legacy of their father. I’m sure both men are both very wealthy and they still put on the jeans and get outside to get dirty and you have to respect that. I’m not sure if Perry is at each trip for visitors in Alaska, but he appears to show up at a lot of them. If you plan a trip to the Alaska mining camp there is a good chance you will see Perry cleaning some fish or conducting the gold draw.
Buzzard Massie’s final resting place is near the Cripple River mining camp in Alaska. Visitors can visit his grave site and other areas of the massive property these guys own near Nome, Alaska. There are 4 wheelers available to rent and this will help you cover all the ground they own. Gold panning supplies are available for those that want to search the various creeks or just use a high banker on the shore line to search for all the flower gold that the ice leaves each year. I look forward to the day I can make a trip up to Cripple River and spend a week or two with the Massie’s creation in Alaska. It’s been a family tradition for the Massies and don’t be surprised to see Tom’s son or daughters take up the reins, when they get older and continue the family tradition.
Watch these two full episodes of Alaskan Gold Rush
|Gold Rush: Alaska | Season 1 – Episode 1 | “gold Nuggets” | Full Episode|
|Gold Rush: Alaska | Season 2 – Episode 1 / Episode 2 / Episode 3 | Full Episodes|