Desert Survival Tips: How to Make Water, Shelter, and Fire
March 17, 2022

Being stuck in a desert may seem like a storybook fantasy when you think about it. But a desert is never a great place to be stranded in – well, except the one in Islandia where there’s plenty supply of cocktails. If you end up trapped in one, here are desert survival tips to help you make water, shelter, and fire.

1. Find a Source of Drinking Water

Water is the lifeblood of survival. You may survive for three weeks without food, but you cannot survive more than three days without water, especially in tropical climates. To find water, venture into the inner part of the desert. There’s a chance you would locate stream water or freshwater source further inland. If you can’t find one, secure any container to capture rainwater using large leaves to funnel the drops.

Rainfall is never guaranteed, so you may consider making a solar still. Here’s how:

a. First, dig a damp hole in the ground near a tree edge.

b. Then, put a container in the hole and fill the gaps around the container with wet objects like wet leaves.

c. Place a plastic sheet to cover the hole and hold it with large rocks around the hole edges.

d. Place another small rock at the center of the plastic above the container. You may soon notice condensation on the plastic underside. It runs to the center, dripping the distilled water into your container.

2. Build a Shelter

Building a shelter is vital to your survival as it protects you from harsh elements. So, here’s how to build one:

a. Collect about 20 long and sturdy branches and plenty of thick foliage.

b. Construct a tripod by placing the three longest branches into the ground.

c. Place the remaining branches around the tripod to form a circle with an open area as the entrance.

d. Use the foliage to cover the branches to protect them from the elements.

3. Build a Fire

The next step is to build a fire to keep you warm. It is also helpful to boil water, cook food and create distress signals for aircraft, ships, or people far away from your location. Here’s how to build a fire:

a. Collect much dry tinder and dry branches of different sizes.

b. Make a small tepee shelter with the small branches and place exactly where you want the fire.

c. Cut a groove in the base of a piece of wood and put some fuel on one end.

d. Use a hard stick to plow that end up and down the groove, creating friction.

e. The tinder should smoke at this point and then blow on it. This helps to fuel the fire.

f. As the fire starts, blow it gently to grow while putting smaller twigs and branches to make the fire bigger.

Finding food, keeping safe from predators, getting rescued, and hatching an escape are important desert survival tips. They, however, depend on the success of finding water to keep you alive, shelter to protect you from elements and fire to keep you warm, make food and create distress signals.