What happens when you need water and you’re in an area with very little rainfall, or worse yet, you get caught in a remote area during a drought? Fresh rain water can be one of your best drinking sources during an emergency or after a disaster, but it’s not the only trick you have up your sleeve. There’s another form of precipitation that occurs very often, and that is the morning dew.

Dew occurs when humidity condenses in low areas due to cooler nighttime temperatures. Dew, and its chilly brother frost, are both forms of precipitation that can be collected for water. But a word of warning: Dew is only as clean as the surface it collects on, which is usually dirty. With this in mind, your drinking water collected from gathered dew should always be disinfected.

Dew and frost are best collected before and around sunrise in low-lying areas. It can be sopped up with a piece of absorbent cloth, a sponge or a bundle of dried grass. Wipe up that dirty water, squeeze it into a container, then boil the water or chemically treat it for safety before consuming. DO NOT DRINK DEW DIRECTLY, regardless of the number of survival books that tell you it’s okay.