emergency shelter.
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Scott Falls, Alger County, Michigan
A forest bed of wild leeks
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Basic Survival Skills

Underground Water Still

An underground water still will collect any residual moisture from the ground. Green leafy plants can be added if they are available.  As with the aboveground water still it is possible to collect up to a quart of water in a twenty-four hour period.  Because the process is so time consuming, you should start it before you actually need the water.  In the meantime, implement other collection methods whenever possible.
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Please note:  This method should only be used as a last
resort for finding water.  It is unreliable.  In some areas, the ground is so dry that you will not get any water using this method.  However, there are many areas of the world where it can be done quite successfully.  Best case scenario, about a quart a day.
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Materials needed for an underground water still:
Shovel or other tool for digging
Container to catch your water in.  (You should find a one quart pot in your mess kit)
Plastic sheet
Something with a little weight to it, like a small rock.
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Construction of the underground water still:
Choose a low lying area such as a dry stream bed or a dip in the ground where water would collect if it rained.   The spot must receive sunlight most of the day.
Cover the hole with a plastic sheet or a tarp (which could also serve many other purposes) and seal the outer edges with your excavated soil to hold it in place and prevent evaporation.  Place a small rock directly over your  collection container to form an inverted cone. The condensed moisture will run down the plastic and drip into your container.
If you use plants in the hole as an additional moisture source, you will need to dig the  original hole larger to accommodate this additional material.   Line the sloped sides with your foliage.
Do not use poisonous plants for obvious reasons and avoid plants to which you have a known alergy.
Be sure that nothing but the outer edge of you plastic touches the ground or foliage or the earth will re-absorb the condensed water.  Again, be sure the edges of the plastic are held securely all around to prevent evaporation of moisture.
Hand drawn image of an underground water still
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Always purify your collected water. Who knows what kind of bacteria is in the earth or on the greens that were placed in your still.
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The following recipes contain ingredients found in the wilderness
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