Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A quest for water

Of all the survival skills, those that deal with water are the most important.. It is the no1 most important thing to have in a survival situation. Forget food and shelter and focus on how to get clean drinking water first.

Finding water

If a person is lost in the wild the first thing to do is find water even when one does not feel thirsty (you will be soon). A person can go without water for 3 days, that's a common rule. In hot enviroments however you can die in less then 2 days so finding water is vital. It doesn't realy matter if you find a small pond, a lake or a waterfall aslong as it's not salt water. Once you have found water you need to make a choice.. Do you filter or clean the water or do you drink it straight from the stream. If you are thirsty you can be tempted to drink it immediately without filtering it and there definately is a risk involved here. Water may look clean but there may be a dead animal rotting in that water a short distance away from you. And waters close to cities should be avoided.

Cleaning water

If you think your watersource is not clean then it needs to be filtered. Everyone has their own opinion about what is the best way to do this. If you ask me, If you're in doubt about if it's safe to drink then you need to boil the water. Some say you need to boil for 3 or even 10 minutes.. this is absolute cr*p.. Once the water has reached it's boiling point all the water would be free from unhealthy bacteria.

If the water looks very dirty then just boiling it might not be enough. Camping and other outdoor stores often sell water filters usualy these are pumps, dirty water goes in and clean water gets pumped out. You can also but water purification tablets and they are often put in survival kits.

There is also a real populair design for a do it yourself water filter. You take an empty plastic soda bottle, get rid of the top and cut off the bottom with a knife, clean the inside with a little water. Then you take a piece of cotton cloth (other materials might work?) and you put this on the inside of the bottle at the top. Now it is time to fill it up with multiple layers of sand, gravel, dirt and powdered charcoal. Now you hang it over your canteen, bowl or whatever you're using. Water is poured at the bottom of the bottle, gets filtered and is drinkable once it exits the bottletop.

What if there is no water?

There are always places on earth where there are no lakes, rivers or other source of water and i'm not just talking about the deserts. You can walk for miles and miles and still not see any water. So what are other ways to get water?
Snow seems a good idea and it is, however eating snow can get your body temperature falling rapidly to the point where it gets realy dangerous, and often it can make you feel even more thirsty. So it needs to be melted and warmed up a bit. The problem with snow is that snow is made up of 80% air.. So you'll need large quiantities in order to fill a canteen. Not the best option but it might be the only option available in some areas. In hot areas you may look for dark areas in the soil, when you dig them out there a big chance of finding water. Also look for signs of animal activity, in areas where lots of animals come together there is usualy water nearby. Also remember that rainwater is always fresh and does not need to be filtered.
You can also get water from vegetation. A populair technique is to bind a clear plastic bag over a branch. When the water inside the plant evaporazes it gets traped in the bag. Here is also a good video of a different techniques.


  1. I'll look up a few ways to actually find water tomorrow. there must be a way. :)

    On a final note, this blog and especially commenting on it has made me realise that I want to start a blog about such things myself too. Discuss what's on my mind, not specifically for an audience.

    I'll start my own soon. If you'd like, I'll post the link here when I started it.

  2. If you have your own blog be sure to post a link as I would love to pay a visit.

    My blog has turned into a combination of a diary and an information resource for the few who are about to wonder and it was a lot of fun so far.

    Take care

  3. In this case, I think I'd rather buy/install water filters at home. Who wouldn't want clean, safe water? :) But I've been trying to find the best brand of water filtration, any thoughts? I'm also considering the price! :P

    1. Hi there misty

      Forgive me but I'm not sure as to what you are talking about. Installing water filters at home?

      This article I wrote is about how to filter water in a survival situation in the outdoors.. when you are far away from home. Or when you find yourself in a different situation when you are are forced to filter and drink water from a local stream, river or lake.

      When it comes to domestic ways of cleaning water I can't help you out, sorry. Something tells me you're a prepper who is preparing for a SHTF scenario and tries to find a way to clean water am I right?

  4. Thanks for sharing this! There are so many ways that we can do to survive in case we ran out of water outdoors. Thank you for teaching how we can possibly filter the water first too.

    Elia Lester

    1. Thank you for your kind reply. Well I learn such things from others, then I share it so others may learn a thing or two and so the circle goes around. It is good to keep such knowledge alive so it might one day saves lives
      Take care