Water Supply Considerations, Off-Grid In The Jungle

The jungle provides different sources of water. Those sources are; rain, natural springs, wells, rivers and creeks. In the jungle, where water is usually plentiful, you most likely have access to more than one source. Your water supply will also vary with the seasons.

Rain water is one of the best. It is a much softer water than well or spring, which can have a high content of minerals. For us, being situated in the Mountain Pine Ridge area, minerals are in abundance. Rain water washes and rinses very nicely. The rain water is collected by simply having gutters run to a holding tank. By adding a very small amount of bleach (approximately 5 oz. bleach per 1,000 gallons of water), it is drinkable water. During rainy season, you are in heaven. But come dry season, you want (and need) a second source…

Most mountainous jungles have several natural springs, or it is usually not too deep to find a water source and dig a well. A good spring can provide water year round. Our spring fortunately does not dry out! The best thing to do is isolate your spring to prevent wild life from contaminating it and add some fish which will eat mosquitoes and their larva or bacteria in the water. If you are lucky enough to have a spring above your holding tank, than all you have to do is install a pvc line and gravity will take care of filling up your tank. If not, as in our case, you need to run a line from the spring to your tank and use a water pump. You can get an electric or gas water pump, depending on your situation (is there an available power supply near your spring?). Keep in mind that a gas water pump is much more versatile.

Well water is basically the same type as the spring. This water is usually good to drink. But due to the high content of minerals, we prefer consuming it in a limited quantity. For cooking (soup, pasta…) and for coffee it is perfect. When working outside and drinking 1 to 2 gallons a day, we prefer bottled water. One other disadvantage with high mineral content is a build up in your shower, sinks and toilet. If you don’t stay on top of it, it can become a real chore to remove. The only problem with a well if you don’t already have one is, to figure out where to dig! We were lucky as there was already an 18’ hand dug one on our land. If you don’t have one, hopefully there’s an old water witch or wizard with a magic stick in your neighborhood!

Creeks and rivers are an abundant source of water although some, especially creeks, can dry out during a very dry season. Being well aware of what is upstream on the creeks and rivers is very important. As they are widely used by people and animals, so there will be lots of foreign matters introduced to this body. When it rains, the run off from the hills and mountains make this water murky, caused by mud and along with that will be logs and/or fallen trees and anything else that is loose in the underbrush. It is basically, one of mother natures cleaning mechanisms. In our situation, with a creek that hasn’t dried out as far as anyone can remember, it is very good water (with basic filtration) for most everything, except for consumption.

A good idea is to install one of those basic ‘under the sink’ water filter somewhere along your supply line.

Having all 4 sources as we do, and being set up to pump from all of them, makes life much more pleasant. In conclusion; your best water is from the rain, then it’s a spring or well. And if all else fails… the creek or river!


Other Posts:

1 ~ Living Comfortably In The Jungle Of Central America!
2 ~ Producing And Storing Your Own Electricity, You Have The Power To!
3 ~ Building Off-Grid In The Jungle, Fun But Challenging
4 ~ Easy Broadband Satellite Internet Access
5 ~ The Domestic Cats’ Life In The Jungle
6 ~ The Belize Mennonite’s Lifestyle
7 ~ How To Live As An Expat In A Foreign Country
8 ~ The Invasion Of The Flood Flies
9 ~ Living in Paradise! But… Where Is It?
10 ~ Solar Panel Placement & Sun Chart Creator
11 ~ Health Issues When Living Abroad
12 ~ Telecommunication Challenges In A 3rd World Country
13 ~ Fleas & Ticks In The Jungle
14 ~ The Dangers Of The Black Poisonwood Tree
15 ~ To Buy Or To Rent When Moving Abroad
16 ~ Home Schooling When Living Abroad
17 ~ Tips & Hints On Things To Watch Out For During Construction – Part 1 of 2
18 ~ Tips & Hints On Things To Watch Out For During Construction – Part 2


4 Responses

  1. Ahhhh, there it is. I’ve been waiting for your Post about the water issue where you are. That as you know is also another issue besides electricity over in Indonesia.

    The water supply in Indonesia is simply artrocius. Indonesia does not have a water purification plus plus for their populace. It’s mostly well water or water taken from the rivers.

    What is damning is that the water supply from the authorities comes on alternate days IF it comes on alternate days. Mostly, the water supply is cut off and water has to be ordered from private companies that will truck 1000 liters of water to be pumped into the house water tanks. The charge for 1000 liters is exorbitant to say the least.

    Makes me wonder if the water authority are in cahoots with the water companies because even during non dry seasons, there is no water supply from the water authority.

    I cannot get well water because the terrain where the house is, the underground water is reddish. Lots of bauxite deposits on that island.

    Rain water is collected from the front and back of the house – that is only when there is rain.

    Normal water if I might call it so, is so dirty that I have had to install 28 water filters all over the house (just like the one that is shown in your photograph). Plus, I installed a foot cyclindrical sand filter right after the main inlet and a Reverse Osmosis + UV Light Water Filter treatment system for drinking water.

    All that installation cost me a bomb. Thank heavens that the maintenance cost is negligible. Filters are changed every week !!!

    There are no creeks or streams nearby the house.

    It is only after fixing the water filters that I do not suffer body itches right after taking a shower. That is how bad the water cleanliness is in Indonesia.

    Which explains why I have noticed that there is a high rate of appendectomy in Indonesia. Even children as young as 9 years old have an appendectomy. The water has so much organic contaminants.

    You are so fortunate out there in nature’s wild with at worst times, a running stream or a creek nearby.

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