I recently read a blog post about water dowsing, also referred to as witching or divining. I found the title to be somewhat misleading, as the author made no mention of using a divining stick or rods, just useful tips on how to locate water in various climates and topography.
Without thinking about it, I hastily posted a comment pointing out the omission of the use of divining rods, and that I have personally done it and it does work. Some time later it occurred to me that when I used divining rods I was not trying to locate water, exactly, but a PVC (plastic) sewer line and septic tank. I assumed the water in the line and tank was what the divining rods were acting on. Then it occurred to me that the underground water table level is quite high in the whole valley, ranging from only 4 to 8 feet below ground level. Shouldn't the divining rods have reacted to water that shallow? Or would the divining rods "act" differently in an area where the underground water table level is very deep or non-existent? I am anxious to test this somewhere where it is unlikely for water to be anywhere near the surface - maybe the top of a mountain? We still have several feet of snow on the ground here so I won't be doing that anytime soon so the jury is still out on the ability to locate water, but I would like to share how to make and use divining rods to locate utilities, which is what I have successfully used them for.
Many people think that using divining rods to locate water is just an old wives tale, scam, or simply a forgotten art or special skill. When I was a young boy I watched an old guy determine where to drill a well, using a forked stick. According to a U.S. Geographical Survey Website I visited, the best stick is from willow, peach, and witchhazel. They also state that some "dowsers" use keys, coathangers, wire rods, pliers, pendulums, and several other materials or items. They go on to say that many scientists debunk this age-old method of locating water on the grounds that almost everywhere there is water underground - hence the successful record.
As mentioned above, it will be awhile before I can test this further in locating water, but I can say beyond a doubt that one can accurately locate things buried in the earth, such as phone and power lines (whether live or disconnected), water, sewer, and propane or natural gas lines, and septic tanks.
I used to be rather skeptical or at least thought it took a special skill or knowledge to be a “water witcher” until a guy I know demonstrated his method to me. He showed me how to do it, and it truly does work extremely accurately.
HOW TO MAKE A PAIR OF DIVINING RODS:
The ones I have used are brass brazing rods 30 inches in length (I don’t believe the length is that critical). The gentleman that showed me this claimed that heavy copper or even steel wire would work too, but it is not as sensitive, therefore not as accurate as brass. 4 or 5 inches from one end bend the rods 90 degrees to form the “handles”.
HOW TO USE DIVINING RODS:
Grasp these “handles” firmly, with the rods horizontal and parallel to each other in front of you pointing forward, about 8 – 16 inches apart. Test this on something you know is buried underground, like a water or gas line, septic tank or something to that effect. Walk slowly over it. The rods will be drawn together and cross each other when you are over it, and they will return to the parallel position after you pass. If you are walking along the length of the line the rods will remain crossed unless you waver off the line, or it ends, in which case the rods will return to the parallel position. If you come to a 90-degree bend in the line, one rod will remain straight, but the one on the side the line turns will point in that direction. If you hit a “T” both will point out in the directions the line is running. Whatever force it is that moves the rods in your hands (I assume some kind of magnetism) is very strong – so strong you can grip the rods nearly as hard as you can and they will still move. Give it a try – it will make a believer out of you, and hopefully, this will be as useful (and fun!) for you as it has been for me.
If anyone out there has any personal experience with the use of divining rods, feel free to share with us. I will follow up on the validity of locating water with these rods when our snow melts, so be looking for that post in a month or two. Thanks for reading!