Outdoor survival skills are extremely important if you should become lost or stranded out in the wilderness. Finding water is one of the greatest survival skills you can learn, but what happens if the water is dirty and unfit for consumption? It is important to learn how to filter water.
It is important to know that filtering water is not the same as purifying water, making it safe for drinking. Still, this outdoor survival skill can be extremely useful in an emergency.
When the best water available is muddy water, you will need a filter to clean the water. Filtering water removes all visible dirt particles making it safer for drinking. This does not remove microbes and bacteria from the water, but often it can make the water taste better.
To filter water, you must begin with a container. A bottle will work well; cut the bottom off the jug and use it similarly to a funnel. Using a can will work, too. Poke several holes in the bottom of the can with your pocket knife for best results. Then let the waterfall through the holes and into a separate clean container.
There are several methods to filter water in the wilderness. Here is another option for you to consider during an emergency. Strain the water through a cloth or piece of clothing over a container. This may remove some particles.
Use what nature provides. If you have rocks and sand, alternate these in layers to make a filter. The more layers you have, the better.
Make a cone from bark if you can’t find some other type of container. Layer the rocks and sand inside the cone. Tie the bottom of the cone with a string; placing small stones on the bottom of the cone as the last layer will help hold the bark together.
Use fine and coarse layers in the filter, alternating between the two. At the bottom of the cone, you will need to stop the sand from pouring through, which isn’t difficult. Use grass that is not poisonous, several pebbles, or a piece of cotton material.
Pour collected water through the filter. Catch the water in a container after it has gone through the filter. If the water is not clear, pass it through the filter again. Repeat until the water runs clear.
Again, it is important to know that just because the water is clear does not make the water completely safe to drink. The water still needs to be purified, and the water may contain tiny bacteria that can pass through the filter.
Knowing how to filter water is a vital outdoor survival skill. Keep yourself alive by ensuring water is safe for consumption and staying hydrated until you can get the help you need. Even if filtering water isn’t as healthy as purification, it can be a step closer to water that is safer for drinking. Practice this valuable skill before you actually need it. It could really save your life.