With the ground beginning to thaw out, drilling a well has been another topic at the top of our homestead to do list. The big question, though, is how do we know where to drill it? We've read about several highly scientific methods (a.k.a. it will cost us a fortune) and one not so scientific method known as water dowsing. Dowsing sounded like such fun (and it's free), so we gave it a try! Mike met an older man who had downsed for his well, and told us that, basically, this is how it works: First, you take two lengths of wire. Hammer the wire straight and bend the end at a 45 degree angle to make a handle. With your elbows tucked into your body, hold the rods loosely in your hands so they can move freely. Begin walking and when you find water, the rods will begin to cross on their own. Mark the spot with a stick, and that's where you drill the well. It's quite a spectacle to watch this in action, as they will cross and uncross by themselves as you walk across a water source. It feels like a weak magnetic pull. Supposedly, it doesn't work for everyone, and this seems to be true. It worked for all of us, except Mike. We found water near some of the larger trees, which was to be expected and over many areas around the land. We also found water in the bird bath! I read today, that using a fresh willow branch is the most accurate tool to use, so we're going to try different instruments and see if we get different results.
How accurate is this method? I have no idea, we'll have to wait and see. For now, we're having fun experimenting.