How To Find Water In The Desert

Running out of water is one of the worst things that can happen to someone.  Especially, if you happen to be in a dry, sweltering hot desert.  I won't sugar coat this for you. If you run out of water in the desert, these tips might not produce gallons of H20, but they might keep you hydrated long enough to get out or stay alive.

Here are 6 tips to find water in the desert.

1. Find Plants and Insects

This one is obvious.  Move toward vegetation, not away from it.  Even in a barren desert, there are patches of vegetation. You can also eat the bugs  to sustain your body.

2. Where Are The Birds?

Birds build their nests close to resources like food and water. Follow birds or locate their nests, water will be nearby.

3. Look for Valleys, Canyons, and Cracks

A crevice at the bottom of a mountain is a good place to find water.  Rainwater will run off and pool up in these areas. If you can't find any, move to step 5.

4. Dried Riverbeds and Ponds

Dried up water sources like ponds, puddles, lakes, or rivers are a good place to find ground water. If you don't see any on the surface, move to step 5.

5. Dig a Hole 

If you don't find water on top of the soil, there's a good chance you're going to have to dig for it. You'll want to dig down about 12 inches. If you don't see any moist soil, move to your next spot.  It might take a few tries if you're digging for it.

6. Hang a Shirt Overnight

If you're desperate you can hang your clothing overnight.  Then in the morning, squeeze out the dew. It may not be much, but every gulp helps at this point.


You should filter the water whenever possible due to the amount of airborne bacteria. Water that has been stagnating can carry all kinds if parasites.

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