How to Find Drinkable Water in the Wild


How to Find Drinkable Water in the Wild

Quenching the Thirst for Adventure

Before we get into the various ways to find water in the wild, let us first talk about the importance of hydration.  Being that the human body is made up of 60 percent water it doesn’t take a PhD. in Hydrology to understand that water is a must for survival.  80 percent or so of our blood is made up of water, and it plays a valuable and necessary role in the metabolizing and transportation of essential elements, proteins, and carbohydrates that are vital for fueling our body’s activities.  It is also crucial for the disposal of waste and the proper functioning of our brains.  After oxygen, it is the most important life sustaining priority.  We really can’t stress enough its importance, so please take the information in this article seriously!

In a day full of normal activities you should drink 2 to 3 quarts of water.  That number increases to 4 to 6 quarts during a physically active day or in hot or cold environments.

  • Drink before thirst sets in!  Thirst is a sign of dehydration.
  • Depending upon temperature and activity drink between ½ a quart and 1 quart of water per hour.
  • When dehydrated try to keep sweating at bay and not to eat.
  • Salt makes dehydration worse, so don’t drink urine, sea water, or blood!
  • Never drink untreated water!  Even clean looking water can be contaminated with anything from microorganisms to chemicals, all of which can lead to illness and worsening dehydration.
  • Don’t eat snow!  Find a way to turn it into liquid water.

Now that you have an idea of the importance of keeping hydrated and have learned some dos and don’ts, let’s talk about how to find water in the wild.  First, let’s start with a little help provided by Mother Nature.

  • At dawn and dusk birds will usually take a low and direct flight path to sources of water.
  • During the day, birds circling in the sky are often doing so over water.
  • Amphibians such as frogs and salamanders need water.  If you spot them, water is usually nearby.
  • Ants need water and will often build their colonies near a source of water.
  • Mammals will usually visit a water source at dawn and dusk just like birds.
  • Trails created by both mammals and people often lead to water.
  • Bees are usually present near a water source.
  • Mosquitoes can indicate a water source is nearby.
  • Valleys are good indications of water.
  • Underground and natural springs can often be found where there is green vegetation at the base of a mountain or cliff.

So as always, Campers & Gear is here to make sure you know before you go.  Take the time to learn these important lifesaving skills then get out there and be confident that you can quench your thirst for adventure!

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