Saturday, January 5, 2008

Home sweet home, these stacks were 75 to 200 feet high

I counted roughly 75 smoke stacks when driving by this place. It was located right outside the front gate of FOB Caldwell across Route Taco. It was massive to say the least, a labyrinth or contorted paths and roads often leading to dead ends.
Along with Balad ruz it was a main dish on Apache Troops plate initially, click to enlarge.
The kilns were fired by crude oil pumped directly from the ground, so I was told, you could see the pumps and pools of black oil though and peek into the kilns to see the ignited jet of fuel flaming and hissing menacingly. The big crane you see in the distance dug the huge open pits from which the "clay" for the bricks was excavated. As stated in the aerial photo below of balad ruz a section would go into here on mission for searches and patrols. It was full of choke points (holes in the piles of bricks/berms where an IED could be easily placed) and like idiots we kept driving through them but fortunately nobody was blown up. Munitions were scattered all around the place 122mm and 155 mm artillery rounds and such. North Carolina had been here a year and we still found them laying around. It was a big place is my point, hard to completely search or control.