Hello, I'm new to the forum. I have just purchased a Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker which I hope to get to know well. I live in Brooklyn, New York (but hasten to add I was born in Ranger, Texas) in a neighborhood rapidly filling up with pretty good BBQ joints. I have used other smokers but regard myself as new and in a learning mode. I'm told trial and error is the best teacher, and I'm sure that's true, but I also intend to monitor this forum and learn from the experience of veterans. For the time being, my questions will tend to relate to the use of the WSM, although I hope some may be of general interest. I have a first question, below: How important is the water/liquid in smoking a meat like brisket? The obvious answer is that it enables a moist finished product, but is that true? I haven't noticed the BBQ in Lockhart Texas as having a water component in the smoking, but then again I don't know. I ask because I am planning to smoke a brisket in my WSM without use of the water pan, but would appreciate some input first. Many thanks in advance. Tom T.