9 Ways to Find Water in the Wild: Survival 101

According to Rule 3, a person can only go three days without water. Of course, this is not an absolute time limit, as it depends on many variables. Suffice it to say that water is one of our most important resources.

Given that most of the planet is covered with it, one would think it wouldn’t be that hard to find. And sometimes it isn’t, but sometimes it is so difficult that you wonder where all the water has gone.

In our modern lifestyle where we turn on the tap, it’s easy to forget how to find this precious and essential resource in nature. If you find yourself in a survival situation or stuck somewhere far from civilization, here are 9 ways to find water in nature.

Note: The following article is about finding water, not how to make it drinkable. Once water is found, it must undergo a process of filtration and purification before it can be consumed. For example, a personal reed filter can be used for this purpose.

The 9 best ways to find water in nature

Aquatic Plants

The water vine is a plant species belonging to the family of vines. It contains a lot of water, which can be obtained by cutting the vine.

For faster throughput, it is helpful to cut the vine at two separate ends. Once the vine is cut, you can drink the water immediately or collect it in a container for later use.

Proper identification of this plant is important because there are many types of vines in the world. A vine with milky sap is usually a good sign to stay away from.

Always sunny

With a minimum of materials, it is easy to build a solar panel to collect water in a natural environment. The materials needed are a piece of equipment to dig a hole, a catch basin, a piece of clear plastic, some greenery and some stones or pieces of wood.

The construction of the solar panel is still quite simple. It consists of digging a hole in the ground and placing greenery and a waste container inside. The hole is then covered with clear plastic with a small weight in the middle.


As the hole heats up from the sun’s rays, water begins to evaporate from the green vegetation. Because of the plastic coating, the water cannot escape and condenses on the underside of the plastic.

A small weight in the center of the plastic directs the condensation to the container where it drips and accumulates. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to build a solar camera.

Step 1

Dig a hole. The size of the hole will depend on the size of the plastic sheet and the catch basin. The hole should not be too shallow or too deep for proper operation.

The hole is usually several feet wide and several feet long, and perhaps one to two feet deep.

Step 2

Gather a bunch of greenery and place it at the bottom of the hole.

Step 3

Take a catch basin and place it on the ground and in the center of the hole. Make sure the place where it is placed is level.

Step 4

Cover the top of the hole with clear plastic. Weigh the edges of the plastic with rocks, pieces of wood, or any other material you can find. Be sure to unlearn the plastic covering the hole at this stage.

Step 5

Find a small stone and place it in the center of the plastic wrap so that it is directly above the bowl in the hole.

Gradually apply the sides of the plastic film so that the center of the film begins to sink slightly. The solar panel is still being finished.

sweat lodge

I thought I would always follow the sun with this trick because it is quite similar. Plants and trees gradually lose water through their leaves in a process called transpiration.

If you have a plastic bag, this water is easy to collect. Just take a bag and place it around a branch with lots of green leaves and tie the end of the bag to close it.

During perspiration, the evaporated water cannot escape from the bag and accumulates on the bottom. This method can be very time consuming and therefore you will not float in the water. Install as many bags as possible to increase the total amount of water.

Water from the trees

The first way to get water from a tree is to draw it. This process involves drilling a hole in the tree trunk and installing a tap. This allows the water-rich sap to circulate from inside the tree to the outside, where it can be collected.

Maple is one of the most common tree species used for sap production. How long you can touch a maple tree depends on the area you are in and the time of year. The best time to do this is at night, when the temperature is below freezing and the temperature during the day is above freezing.

The second method of getting water from a tree is a little easier than the tap method, but the water may not be as clean. Some large trees may develop “pockets” or depressions where a branch meets the trunk. When these areas are heavily shaded by the sun, they accumulate moisture and form puddles.

The same idea applies to dead or fallen trees that show voids. These areas act as water collectors and should be checked, especially after another rain.

Dry riverbed

When looking for water, some people completely ignore a dry river or stream bed. However, this may be a mistake.

Some stream beds are “seasonal.” Streams flow full of water during the rainy season, but cannot carry water year-round. However, this does not mean that there is no water below the surface.

It may be worthwhile to walk across the dry bed and look for low spots or sunny areas. Some of these depressions or shaded areas may contain water just below the surface.

Start digging the hole. If the ground starts to get cool and wet, that’s a good indication that water may be coming. Dig deeper and then stop.

If there is groundwater in the area, it will seep into the well and begin to pool at the bottom.


Under no circumstances should salt water be drunk, as it will only accelerate dehydration.

However, if the materials and knowledge to desalinate water are available, it can be captured and consumed.

Collecting the morning dew

When I was younger and learned this method, I was amazed at its simplicity. We all know that if you are outside a lot, a morning walk can be a rainy affair.

Plants can get very wet early in the morning, before the sun is completely down and everything has evaporated. If you need water, this is an opportunity you can take advantage of, and it’s easy to do.

Absorbent material is needed to catch the dew. A cotton item, such as a T-shirt, sock or scarf, works well.

Depending on the height of the vegetation, the cotton can be attached to the ankles or another part of the body and collect water as the person walks.

Once the garment is saturated, squeeze the water into the collection tray and repeat the above process as often as possible.

Rainwater Collection

This is probably one of the easiest ways to fill a cistern when no other water sources are available. The advantage of rainwater harvesting is that it is fresh, clean water. The disadvantage is that you have to collect rainwater.

In case of rain, use suitable containers to collect water. These can be water bottles, jars, cups, stones with cutouts, sinks, even an inverted cap can work well.

If you have a large plastic sheet, tarp or poncho, unfold it and attach the corners to the appropriate attachment points. Make sure the corners are secure, as the weight of the water will accumulate quickly.

Also, make sure the tarp is not too tight, but a little loose. This means that when water gets into the tarp, it should collect in the middle and not run to the ground.

Digging a hole

This method is similar to the dry river bed method, but can be used anywhere. The best place to dig is where there is green vegetation or the lowest point you can find in the area.

Start digging a hole. When the earth or sand starts to get wet, you know you are in a good position. Let the water seep into the hole and fill it up so it can be collected. If the ground dries up after a few feet, it’s probably best to move and try again.

Snow and ice

Snow and ice can be collected for consumption, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, snow and ice must be melted before it is consumed. Otherwise, you run the risk of lowering your body temperature and dehydrating you even more.

In addition, the best snow to collect is fresh white snow and ice that is clear or white with hoarfrost and bubbles. Pigmentation of ice or snow can be a sign that it is spoiled and should be avoided.


It is easy to succumb to a negative view of water when it is not available. But I hope this article has given you a few ideas to help you find water if you ever find it in nature.

Thanks for reading and be ready!

Do you have any other fun ideas for finding water in nature? Tell us in the comments below and let us know!

Frequently asked questions

How do you find water in nature?

How to find water in nature | The art of masculinity

How do I get survival water?

The more water you can collect, the better your chances of survival. A fairly simple way to collect water is to produce more water underground. To do this, you will need a plastic tarp, a digging tool, a container, a drinking tube and a rock. Choose a moist place that gets sunlight most of the day.

How can I find water somewhere?

How to get drinking water almost everywhere | ENO Blog

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