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When is the best time of year to hand-dig a shallow well?

 
pollinator
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Location: Eastern Great Lakes lowlands, zone 4/5
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Is there a seasonality to well digging? Specifically for shallow hand-dug wells. I'm thinking of digging one in an area with quite a high water table and an abundance of relatively clean water, so buckets or pumps could draw water out of the well to be boiled potable or used as if coarse-filtered rainwater. I'm wondering what time of year would be most appropriate or inappropriate to do this, or if any time is fine.

Well specs I'm thinking ~18' something like in the following video. This would supplement rainwater and be used as a camping-like water source for...camping, and some plant nursery support. If/when I scale up to more substantial farm enteprises, I'd probably plunge into a higher pressure deep well, but I feel like a hand well has some wholesome potential.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhOrnDOLz2c

Lots of work but I could do it bit by bit. For comparison, a modern well in this area is generally dug ~200' and total including lining, pressure tank and all is estimated to cost $6,000 - $9,000. Pretty good motive to dig to get a cheaper water source until more substantial pressure is needed.
 
pollinator
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Location: Victoria BC
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I dug mine(with the excavator) in mid september, before any heavy rains. I am on the west coast, so rainfall and water tables are highly seasonal. I think this was pretty ideal timing, but I would ideally have been ready to dog by late august in case the rains were early.

I hit water in gravel at about 17ft, and solid rock of some sort, as far as I could tell, at 19ft.

The water level came up about 7ft from the bottom at that time, overnight; it rose no higher, and would recharge overnight if drained. My casing is 50" inside diameter, so this is a good amount of water, the availability of this much will inform the rest of my water system design


A month later, the water level is at least 5ft higher. I expect several issues would result if I was digging now.

1) Unclear if the water level and recharge rate I discover now will be adequate at the end of the dry season.

2) Hard to keep digging with a hole full of water.

3) Increased issues with sides of hole collapsing and spoil washing back into the hole from heavy rainfall while pit is open.


Some of these issues may not apply with the method you have in mind, but my connection isn't up to viewing the video!
 
gardener
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Agree with Dillon’s view - if they are going to fail, most well will fail in the dry season, if there is one, so that would be the time to dig one to make sure you don’t stop digging too soon!

But I suppose the second best time to dig one is when you want/need one!  
 
pollinator
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Right at the end of your driest period, whenever that is. the water table at my last house moved about 4ft from summer to winter, late August/early September was the time to dig ditches, move heavy machinery etc. there to get water you only had to dig two spades down!
 
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