Locating and Processing contaminated water
by Jason Smith
My most favorite way of getting fresh water is from underground... rarely I'll go for areas of stagnant water or snow at ground level. I scoop a good hole out of the ground about 1-foot wide, 1-2 foot deep near a lake, river or a natural body of water. Note that the deepness of the hole varies from how far you are from body of water at your digging site, I usually go for about 10-25 feet from the body of water.
Once you dig your hole the water wont rush in immediately, let it sit for about an hour. Once it's filled take a unneeded good sized piece of clothing or cloth, and let it set at the bottom, pick the cloth up at all four corners and let the water that drains out of the cloth fill up a canteen or pot of some sort. (This process will remove visible contaminates, such as dirt, small rocks and rubble).
Unless you are on the verge of dying or extremely dehydrated I would advise not to drink the collected water, make yourself a small pit fire and lay some healthy green sticks 2-3in. thick about 1in. apart. Boil all of your water at once since if you boil a small amount... it would just waste time, materials, and it will evaporate quicker leaving you with a small sum of uncontaminated water. Boil your collected water for about 10-12 minutes... (that doesn't mean let it sit in a pot for 10-12 minutes over a fire) wait for a boil then use your best way to judge when 10-12 minutes has past, if no watch is present.
When you have boiled it for the amount of time listed I would let it sit for about 5 minutes... then pour it into a closed container, such as a clean water-bottle, canteen, or any device that can hold liquids securely. Drink sparingly (unless you are dehydrated), since it is a pain to clean out water, let alone collect it if you use this way. Best luck to you!