The Water Still

Try these steps to build a water still.  If you are traveling in a dry area, however, bring water.  Don’t count on being able to rely on a still.

To begin, dig a hole about three feet deep by four feet wide.

If you have plants, layer them in the bottom.  Put a bowl or other container in the bottom and run a plastic tube from the bottom of the bowl to the outside of the still.

Now cover the hole with plastic.  The boys used a garbage bag, but if it is available, a much larger sheet of clear plastic would be better.

Put a weight in the center of the plastic—exactly over the bowl within the still—so that the plastic cover slopes down toward the center at about a 45 degree angle.

Seal all the edges so that no moisture can get out.

If you are in an area where water is available but it is not clean, you can pour water around the outside of the still, you can wet the bottom of the still, or you can even put bowls of impure water inside the still around the outer edge.

Now wait.  The moisture that occurs naturally in the earth and plants or that you have put into the still will begin to evaporate and condense on the plastic cover.  As it condenses, it will roll down the 45 degree angle to the lowest point where it will drop into the waiting bowl.  You can sip the water through the tube without having to dismantle the still.