Before you read this understand it’s part of a series, Part 1 and Part 2 should be read first to give this article much needed context. We spent the day following our failed patrol/observation post mission relaxing around camp pretty much being lazy, that night however we decided to push the envelope. We set out at zero dark thirty to a known trafficking route deep in the desert in full force. Our objective was to set up an “ambush” at a bottleneck in a large dried out creek bed as a blocking force, Ski and I volunteered to take part in this aspect of the plan. Another team would stage on a ridge overlooking it as overwatch for us, effectively creating an L-shape. We utilized our NVGs to roll up to our staging area maintaining light disciple among our vehicles and teams. Upon our arrival we could see lights coming down a hill in the direction our designated wash was connected to; jack pot!

We stepped off into the darkness headed to our objective, night time was the right time. I set up on the left edge of the wash in the prone paired with another guy and Ski covering our six, several meters behind us. The other guys on our team set up along the left side using trees for concealment. We waited, silently I scanned the bend in the wash and its tree-line with my NVGs for any sign of movement straining my ears for the slightest sound; nothing. We waited like that for a good 3 hours not experiencing the slightest sign of cartel traffickers at our location.

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Finally the decision was made by our team leader at the time to patrol up the wash and see if we could make contact, after walking a good 500 yards he decided to turn us around not wanting to stray too far from the rest of the teams. We got back to our vehicle staging area and discovered J had been asleep in his vehicle the whole time while the team on overwatch had been taking selfies with the flash on. Obviously the cartel runners had turned around and headed back the way they came, probably to an alternate route; we could see their flashlights traveling back up the hill in the distance about 5k out from us. We head back and the ‘leaders’ get us lost until some fat ass wannabe with a GPS retraces his logged path; Ski and I are fed up.