Summer Survival Tips (And a Survive Monthly Giveaway!)

Disclosure: This post and giveaway has been sponsored by Survive Monthly. However, all opinions are my own and not influenced or necessarily endorsed by Survive Monthly.

Summer is full of possibilities. To some degree, it’s also full of danger. From rip tides to mudslides, there are a lot of bad things that could happen. I’m not trying to sound doom and gloom, but I also want to make sure that I’m as prepared as possible for every situation that hits. Today, I want to give you a few survival tips that will help you out in a few possible summer situations.

The most important thing to remember is that, regardless of your situation, you should follow a few simple things:

1. Know what’s going on around you. Pay attention to your surroundings and keep an eye on what’s going on. If you don’t, you may not be able to respond as effectively or as quickly.

2. Consider what’s most important. If there’s a mudslide coming down the hill, get out of there, don’t stand around and gather berries. You need to really think about what is essential and do that first and foremost.

3. As you do what you’re doing to stay safe, evaluate if it’s working. If it isn’t, change your plan. Adapt.


If you’re going camping this summer, one important skill to know is how to measure how much daylight you have left. It’s a good thing to consider when you’re hiking, so you’ll know whether or not to keep going, or to just stop. The easy way to do this is to hold your hand at arms length, your hand sideways (so your fingers align with the horizon). Each finger between the sun and the horizon is roughly 15 minutes of daylight left… for example, if you hold your hand at arms length, fingers horizontal, and there are two fingers between the horizon and the base of the sun, you’ll have about 30 minutes before dark. If you have 8 fingers (your hand width twice), you’ll have about 2 hours left.

Also, if you’re out in the wilderness, I’ve got a really unique firestarting idea for you. If you brought along chocolate for s’mores, then you can start a fire using chocolate and a soda can! Use your basic cheap Hershey’s to rub the bottom of a soda can until it shines– the waxy chocolate will polish it to the point that it will gleam and become very reflective. Now, allow the sun’s rays to reflect off of the can and hit your bundle of tinder. Eventually, a flame will ignite from the heat of the reflected rays. See? You thought that chocolate was just for an ooey gooey treat…

Heading to the ocean instead?

There’s always that concern of rip tides when you’re out in the ocean. You’ll know you’re trapped in a rip current when you keep swimming harder and harder but you’re staying where you’re at. Essentially, if you continue to fight the rip current, you’re going to get very tired, and you’ll be at risk of drowning. It seems every trip I take to the ocean, you hear of someone getting caught in one, and it’s just a scary situation. To escape a rip current, allow the current to carry you out to sea until it weakens, then swim parallel to the shore rather than straight towards it. Once you reach a spot where the current isn’t running, turn towards the shore and swim there. Also make sure you’re always swimming with someone else– don’t go alone, and don’t go at night.

Mudslides have been a big part of the news lately. It’s possible to survive a mudslide if you’re very careful. First off, it’s important to stay awake when a mudslide occurs. A lot of times, a mudslide-related death will occur at night, so if you know that the rain is coming down hard and if there’s a chance of a mudslide, staying awake and listening will be the best possible option. Listen to hear a rumble– if you start hearing a rumble, it’s time to evacuate. Don’t pass go, don’t collect $200, get out of there. If there isn’t enough time to get out, do what you can to move out of the way quickly. If the slide is right there, curl into a ball. Protect your head with your arms,and just do your best to survive. More than 90 percent of mudslides are caused by heavy rainfall, so keep that in mind when you are in a rainy situation that could cause a mudslide.

Finally, if you’re headed to a city, one consideration is mugging. While I’ve traveled to the city multiple times and never been mugged, it’s something to think about. If someone demands your money, the best possible course of action is to have a decoy wallet. Buy a cheap wallet and fill it with a couple of singles. Show the mugger, throw it as far away from you as you can, then run in the opposite direction.


I don’t know about you, but I like to get a little help in staying prepared and safe. That’s where Survive Monthly comes in. Launching this summer, Survive Monthly plans to offer a subscription box service (like a way more awesome preparedness version of Birchbox or something) that will come with an assortment of survival goodies– 7-10 items in each box, and could include things like solar blankets, long-term food kits, and non-battery flashlights. These will keep you prepared and give you an assortment of items that could save your life at some point.

Not only is it a great way to help you build a home or travel emergency kit, but it’s also a really good gift for anyone you know who loves activities like Camping, Hiking, Fishing, or Hunting. You never know what’s going to happen and you’ll want to be prepared.

And, as a very special opportunity for readers of, they’re hoping to give away a three month subscription, valued at $119.97 total.


Want to win this subscription that I’m sure is going to be really awesome? You have to do THREE easy steps:

1. First, head over to Survive Monthly’s Facebook Page and give them a like. Even if you don’t plan to subscribe to their boxes, they provide valuable safety tips all the time, like how to make a candle out of an orange, or the uses of paracord bracelets.

2. Go to Survive Monthly’s Website and Sign Up for their Newsletter to Stay Up to Date. Not only will this help you get up-to-date information on when Survive Monthly releases it’s first box, but it will also give you ANOTHER chance to win a 3 month subscription! (Which means if you sign up here and don’t win, you may still have a chance!)

3. Post a comment below with your best summer survival tip OR share why you want to win a Survive Monthly subscription. By commenting below, I’ll be able to check out if you did the above two steps and know that you want to enter to win a Survive Monthly box!


Super simple stuff! Now for the fine print:

This giveaway will run until 6/20/2014 at 11:59pm CDT. You must be a current fan of Survive Monthly and be on their mailing list, as well as comment below, to be eligible for the prize, so no liking and immediately unliking their page, sneaky dudes. No purchase necessary to win, and you must be 18 years old or older and a resident of the United States to enter this giveaway. This post has been sponsored by Survive Monthly as they are providing me with a box and one winner with a three month subscription. However, their post sponsorship has not impacted my review in any way and all opinions above are my own, as always. It is always my goal that you will find value in a post beyond what the giveaway entails. 



  1. My best summer survival tip is to take my husband with me wherever I go! He knows so much about the outdoors and safety/being prepared. I learn a lot from him about that. And, who doesn’t love spending time outdoors with their families? 🙂

  2. Wow! I didn’t know about the chocolate helping start a fire. That is really cool. I really dont have any tips because I count on my kids to know everything to keep me alive. My son would love the survival box so I will have to work on thinking of an idea. Thanks for sharing. Hope whoever wins gets wonderful goodies.

    1. I was shocked by the chocolate tip until I read it from multiple sources! Isn’t it awesome? I’m sure the box is going to be filled with great goodies for your son, especially if he’s a fan of the outdoors!

  3. My best camping survival tip is to always have more than one way to start a fire, and to have an extra set of dry shoes.

    I want to win because I always have the fear of the worst happening, so having emergency items on hand makes me feel safe and prepared.

    1. Amber, that’s always a smart idea, to have multiple ways to start a fire! It seems that something goes wrong with fire a lot– like the matches getting wet or the lighter being out of fluid!

  4. I don’t know much about survival so I’m hoping to learn more, that’s why I would like to win! I guess they have some great information on their facebook page too! Too many times our electricity has went out (sometimes for days on end) and I was not prepared. I don’t want that to happen again 🙂

    1. Thanks for entering! I didn’t know much about survival, either, so I had to consult my younger brother– he’s a survival tips pro! I hear you about not wanting to be unprepared– that’s always a scary situation!

      1. That would be cool to know someone who knows a lot about survival. It’s something I’m very interested in. That sounds funny (I’m interested in survival, who isn’t?!).

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