As fans waited to watch an eight-season retrospective of Todd Hoffman on Gold Rush, a bombshell was dropped on the pre-show, “Win Big or Die Trying.” Parker Schnabel went on television and discussed his “relationship status” with his girlfriend Ashley Youle.
He revealed on the Discovery Channel show that the two have split and he blames himself for what went wrong. What did he have to say about the split, and what had Parker previously said about Ashley to Channel Guide that may inadvertently hint as to why things didn’t work out in the end?
On the Gold Rush episode, “Win Big or Die Trying,” Parker discussed his current relationship with Ashley Youle. Dishing out a few vague details, the 23-year-old gold miner announced that they split, and then he explained the reasons why the two have broken up.
He first stated that he did not make their relationship a “priority” nor did he make Ashley a priority. Thus, Schnabel also stated that she could “do better” than him, all the while saying only good things about her.
He has always stated that she has a happy and “sweet” nature, especially in comparison to his own surly, often moody personality.
Ever the reflective achiever, Parker considers this breakup a “personal failure.”
There has yet to be a statement from Chris Doumitt, who clearly enjoyed working with Ashley Youle in the gold room. It was clear that the adorable Aussie’s good nature and upbeat personality certainly made the job of cleaning gold more tolerable for the hard working miner. When Ashley returned in Season 8 of Gold Rush, there was a huge smile on his face.
Back in 2016, Parker told Channel Guide that he had met Ashley in Australia, and the pair “hit it off pretty well. He explained that “she’s super easygoing,” so he invited her to spend a summer gold mining in the Klondike.
Schnabel further explained that she was willing to drive a truck or do anything else to help them move forward in their quest for gold. Parker also put a lot of trust in her, as she was a new girlfriend in the gold room.
She also knew to stay away from him when he was moody, which could possibly hint at why they eventually broke it off.
“She stayed busy and tried to stay out of my way when I’m in rage mode.”
During Gold Rush Season 8, in his quest for 5,000 ounces of gold, Parker did spend a lot of time being pretty cranky.
Although there was no footage of a fight between the two, fans may remember that after a frustrating week of mining, when it came down to weighing the gold, Parker literally grabbed the bowl from her and quickly poured the gold onto the scale to weigh. Perhaps these sorts of moments are what led to the split? Who knows?
Fans may also remember a few seasons back when his grandpa John Schnabel was alive, he would coach Parker on how to be kinder to others. Perhaps in taking the blame for this relationship failure, Parker is remembering his beloved grandfather’s sage words, and can now see how he could have done better.
No matter what, relationships and gold mining are often oil and water. Todd Hoffman has also been on the record stating that it is tough on a marriage when you are gone six months of the year.
Back when Parker spoke to Maxim in 2016, they asked how it was possible to maintain a relationship. Parker contended that it was tough as he spends most of his time with “middle aged men pretty much all year.” The conditions of the mining camp are not really ideal for nurturing a relationship.
As for now, fans will just have to remember Ashley as a fun diversion during the gritty gold mining season. Clearly, the cameramen were also fascinated by her presence and seemed to enjoy pushing Parker’s buttons.
In her first season on Gold Rush, Discovery put a cameraman in the back seat as the couple drove to Parker’s claim, and Ashley was visibly in awe of the whole operation. They were also there when Parker introduced her to the rest of the team, with Schnabel joking that she was his “sister.”
Once Parker brought in his new girlfriend, the filming game really changed on the Schnabel claim.
At the beginning of Season 7 of Gold Rush, there was a bet between the cameramen on who would get the first footage of Ashley and Parker kissing. There was a bottle of whiskey for the person who achieved that.
Despite Ashley’s attempts at helping the cameraman, Parker, who never previously cared about the cameras or being filmed, would not have any of it. At the end of the season, the whiskey bottle remained on the shelf.
Yet, in Season 8 of Gold Rush, Ashley was quite absent. The veterinary nurse was most frequently seen pouring and weighing the gold at the end of the week. She was also seen in the last episode driving a truck through the Beets’ camp. But, in general, she was very much out of sight.
The last Gold Rush fans saw Ashley was when she hugged Parker’s dog Dozer goodbye. There was no word on whether Parker got the same sort of affectionate farewell.
Ashley Youle, who has always remained very private about her relationship with Parker, has recently been posting photos of her getting back in the art of dance and drawing.
But, if you are looking for any photos of Schnabel, or the breakup announcement, the closest you will get is a photo of Dozer and a photo of Alaska.
As of now, Parker has not posted anything about the breakup on his social media as well.