Capital Living

Sen. Flake will return to deserted island this summer, but this time with his kids

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) is returning to a deserted island, but this time, it might be a bit more challenging.

The Arizona Republican tells ITK he’s heading back to the uninhabited tropical destination in the middle of the Pacific Ocean — which could double as a setting of “Survivor” — for a second time. But now he’s bringing the kids.

{mosads}In 2009, then-congressman Flake famously first roughed it in the wild. At the time he told The Hill that the journey, which was two years in the making, was a chance “to test [his] outdoor survival skills.”

While living “Castaway”-style during his first weeklong trip, Flake caught and cooked his fish dinners, made fires from dry branches, and purified his own water. He also lost about 10 pounds. On his upcoming return to the island, the dad of five will have some help from his brood — his two teenage sons will be joining him.

Courtesy Sen. Jeff Flake

Flake, 50, was mum on the details of his expedition, joking the timing was “classified,” before revealing the family plans to travel to the island “this summer sometime.”

During his previous trek, a tan Flake posed for a (beefcake-esque) photo on the beach in his swim trunks and kept a daily diary of life in the far-flung land. In it, he detailed some of the advantages of surviving solo, which included “being completely alone, there was no one to see that I looked like a complete dork.”

He also wrote of some of his concerns ahead of his outdoor adventure, disclosing that he picked up a suture kit in case a shark or other creature got a bit hungry. “I didn’t know if I’d have the guts to stitch myself up,” he wrote, “but the prospect sounded better than being rescued. That sounded like a career killer for a politician.”

Flake saw a decent amount of sharks, but fortunately, they didn’t take a liking to the lawmaker.

Courtesy Sen. Jeff Flake

Unlike the character Tom Hanks played in “Castaway,” Flake didn’t talk to a volleyball. But to combat loneliness, he numbered more than 100 hermit crabs and grew fond of #1 and #12.

When ITK asked how he plans on keeping his two teens entertained when there are no iPhones (much less air-conditioning or running water) in sight, Flake laughed and exclaimed, “Entertained? That’s entertainment! Spearing fish and cracking up coconuts, what else can you ask for?”

Bob Cusack contributed to this report.

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