So, one of the benefits of living where I do is... the water table is at 15ft. Yes, 15ft... So, this gives me the leverage to "hand auger" a well versus paying someone to come in drill a well in my backyard. The price differential is about $3000. After researching this, I found a company on the East Coast, who specializes in hand-augering equipment for wells. The coolest thing here is; they are a Christian organization who's mission is to provide the means and the tools for countries where fresh water is miles away and where the water if not boiled, could make them deathly ill. HydroMissions provides the parts or a pre-packaged unit for hand-augering your well. The beauty of a well, is... our earth acts as a natural bio-filter for water, thereby extracting all the nastys that will keep you on the Johnny On The Spot... The water should still should be tested for microbes and alkalinity, but for watering your yard, crops and tapping it into certain household needs is very doable.
So, here is the link to HydroMissions:
The steps will be; get the equipment, casing, pump and begin drilling. A 4" casing will be used and I anticipate hitting water at 15ft. I will need to drill to 30ft, as you need to double the distance to compensate for head pressure and usage.
Usually, outside of coastal locations, the water will be very high in mineral content and good for your crops and lawn. I would not recommend watering your chickens with this water unless you have the water chemistry tested. There are a number companies on the web or in your local area who can test your water for less than $50. To me this is worth it...as I have kids and animals, sometimes hard to tell the difference and peace of mind for health's sake is worth it.
I will report more later, but in the meantime ask around and find out where your water table is, see if you can't hand auger a well in your backyard and get off the grid.