‘Pawn Stars’: Rick Harrison Spends Almost Half the Year Living Off-Grid

You might not recognize the name, Rick Harrison, at first mention. But the second you’re reminded of the man behind the Pawn Stars counter, notorious for banter with customers and low-ball offers, you know exactly who Rick Harrison is. He’s created a television phenomenon with his career at the helm of the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas. With that fame, he’s also earned an impressive wealth. But he’s a celebrity who subscribes to the social politics of stardom. He values his connection with nature and spends nearly half the year living off-grid altogether.

Rick Harrison smiling, standing on a dock in front of a marina
Rick Harrison | Eric Catarina/Getty Images

The ‘Pawn Stars’ phenomenon

The pawn industry was the only way to do business and build credit prior to the 1950s. Of course, in today’s market, people use banks and check-cashing services. But there is still a huge demand for the buy, sell, and trade nature of the pawnshop. Three generations of the Harrison family own the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop and use their keen eyes to find rare relics, assign values, and uncover historical details of the unique finds the customers bring in today. The History Channel put the camera crews on the Harrison family business, and almost immediately, the show Pawn Stars is the most profitable show in the network’s portfolio. Generating more than $3 million per episode, the History Channel created celebrities out of the family behind the counter.

Rick Harrison is the face of the pawn industry

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Rick Harrison runs the now world-famous pawn store that had been originally founded by his father. Rick Harrison is worth an average of $8 million today and continues to be an icon in the industry and on the History Channel. Nicknamed “The Spotter,” Harrison sees beyond the transactions in his store. He has a gift for identifying valuable items and a true passion for learning the historical stories and relevance behind the trinkets. He has grown to be the face of the pawn industry, and the subject of hilarious memes offering tongue in cheek jabs as the low-balling nature of the business. He doesn’t seem to mind and doesn’t let the celebrity status go to his head. In fact, he ventures off-grid for months at a time to get away.

His life off the grid

When he’s not peeling back the history of artifacts in the store, Rick Harrison gets out of Dodge. In fact, he spends a solid five months out of the year in the mountains. Harrison has a place in Oregon where he spends much of his winter, living rugged and getting away from the cameras. He shared in an interview that he actually keeps a chainsaw in the bed of his truck, just to handle fallen trees in his path. And it’s so remote that not just any truck will do for his off-grid lifestyle.

What a guy like Rick Harrison needs to drive

Of course, a guy like Rick Harrison has plenty of collector cars in his million-dollar garage. He’s an auto enthusiast at heart, but antique muscle cars won’t get far in the remote driving requirement in Oregon. Having been an off-road enthusiast for most of his life, Harrison shared that there was only one truck worthy of the lifestyle – the 2018 Ford F-150 Raptor. He told MotorTrend it’s a pickup he calls, “a real off-road truck.” With the turbocharged 3.5L engine and 450 horsepower, there’s not much terrain this pickup can’t tackle. He discussed what he loves about this capable truck, citing the ground clearance and suspension. He loves the locking rear differential and says it makes all the “difference in the world” when he’s dragging lumber in the rough.

When a guy like Rick Harrison needs a truck, no one questions his ability to spot the best ride for the job. After all, he is “The Spotter.”