Everyone knows the importance of water in a survival situation. You can only survive without it for three days, but you’ll feel severely dehydrated after just one. This is why water needs to be one of your biggest priorities. You should stock up on two gallons per day per person, but you should also know how to find water, in any survival situation.
1. Natural Water Sources.
The first way of finding water is obvious. Simply walk downhill (or toward clusters of bushes and/or trees) until you find a natural source of water in a lake, stream, river, or pond. If you can’t find one, try digging a hole about a foot deep. If the soil is moist enough, the hole should fill with a bit of groundwater.
Stretch out a tarp and tie it between four trees. If you can’t find four trees near each other, dig a wide and shallow hole in the ground, then lay the tarp over it and hold it in place with a heavy object over each corner. When the rain falls, it will collect in the middle of the tarp. Pour the water from a tarp to a bucket when it starts to get heavy, then set the tarp back up to collect more rainwater. Repeat this process until it stops raining or you have plenty of water.
3. Solar Stills.
The solar still is a classic survival method for collecting water. You’ll need a bucket, some rocks, green leaves, and a plastic sheet such as a tarp or a shower curtain. Dig a hole about two feet wide and one foot deep, then set your bucket in the middle of the hole and surround it with the green leaves. Spread the tarp over the bucket and secure it with rocks on all four corners. Set a smaller rock in the middle of the tarp so that it weighs down over the bucket. Over the course of the day, water will drip down into the bucket, and you should have around 150ml of water by the end of a twelve hour time period.
4. Transpiration Bags.
Another classic water collection method is the transpiration bag. Although this method yields less water than a solar still, it’s also less work. All you need is a clear plastic bag and some cordage. Tie the bag around a branch that has lots of green leaves. Throughout the day, moisture and water will collect in the bag. You can also set a small rock in the bag so that the water collects in one place and ensure that the tree you use is not poisonous.
5. Gathering Dew.
In the morning when it’s still moist outside, tie a clean rag around one or both of your feet and walk through an area of green grass where the dew has yet to evaporate. Each rag will become soaked with water which you can then squeeze into a bowl. Repeat this process until the dew evaporates or you have plenty of water.