Boiling Water with Stones

Boiling Water with Stones for Survival

Boiling water with stones may save your life .  In a survival situation, the basic rule to remember is the rule of 3’s.  You can survive 3 weeks without food, 3 days without water, and 3 hours in  inclement weather either too hot or too cold.  Of course these are the basic rules and many factors can extend or reduce these times.  This basic time frame sets your priorities for survival.  The first basic need is shelter.  Once shelter is established,  your next immediate need will be water, especially in hot environments.  Depending on what gear you have with you, you may or may not be able to purify water for hydration.  Boiling water with stones is a technique to use that may save your life. 

In a situation where you need to hydrate and you have nothing to boil water over a fire, this is an amazing technique to use.  Looking at the images above, you can see that natural materials were used to create a makeshift container.  You want to find a material that will not melt from the rocks, such as the tree bark above. 

A great piece of gear to carry in a go bag, or hiking pack, is a collapsible canvas bucket. The canvas will hold water and will not burn or melt when you place the hot rocks into the water.  If you do not have a container, an aluminum can,, or something that will not burn or melt can be used. 

For more information on these canvas buckets, click the images.

In order to boil water you have to get a fire going, and collect your rocks.  Smooth river rocks work very well.  Depending on the size of your container, collecting 5 to 10 rocks should be sufficient to bring the temperature up to boil water.   You must use caution when using this method, as the rocks, if they are wet can explode when heated and cause serious injury.  Your fire does not have to big huge, just big enough and hot enough to heat your stones.  Do not place them directly into the fire, but just to the edge so you can retrieve them without too much trouble.  The stones will be extremely hot so it is best to find some sticks you can use to pick the rocks from the fire and place them in the water. 

Once you have heated your stone, place them one at a time into the water.  Give each stone time to heat the water.  I usually wait about 3 minutes before I add the next stone. You will begin to see your water bubbling and come to a rolling boil after the addition of several stones.  it may take more or less.  This method of boiling water can cause injury such as a severe burn,  and if you are truly in a survival situation, you want to use extreme caution when dealing with fire, and extremely hot rocks.  A severe burn in that situation could result in infection.  I recommend you practice this technique before you need to use it for real.