Place Names

Battle Mountain, (Hill 665) (Hill 625)South Korea

The line included Battle Mountain (also known as Hill 665, Old Baldy, Napalm Hill or Bloody Knob),

(Hill 665)

The "rocky crags" position, which remained in North Korean hands during most of the battle.


The high ground west of Haman on which the 24th Infantry established its defensive line was part of the Sobuk-san mountain mass.[19]

Sobuk-san reaches its 2,400 feet (730 m) peak at P'il-bong, also called Hill 743, 8 miles (13 km) northwest of Chindong-ni and 3 miles (4.8 km) southwest of Haman.[14]

From P'il-bong, the crest of the ridge line curves northwestward, to rise again 1 mile (1.6 km) away in the bald peak designated Hill 665, which became known as Battle Mountain.[19]

US troops also occasionally called it "Napalm Hill," "Old Baldy," and "Bloody Knob."[14]

 

 Between P'il-bong and Battle Mountain the ridge line narrows to a rocky ledge which the troops called the "Rocky Crags." Northward from Battle Mountain toward the Nam River, the ground drops sharply in two long spur ridges. US troops who fought there called the eastern one Green Peak.[19]


At the western, North Korean–held base of Battle Mountain and P'il-bong were the villages of Ogok and Tundok, 1.25 miles (2.01 km) from the crest. A north–south mountain trail crossed a high saddle just north of these villages and up the west slope about halfway to the top of Battle Mountain. This road gave the North Koreans an advantage in mounting and supplying their attacks in the area. A trail system ran from Ogok and Tundok to the crests of Battle Mountain and P'il-bong.[19] From the top of Battle Mountain, an observer could look directly down into the North Korean–held valley. At the same time, from Battle Mountain the North Koreans could look down into the Haman valley eastward and observe the US 24th Infantry command post, supply road, artillery positions, and approach trails.[14] Whichever side held the crest of Battle Mountain could observe the rear areas of the other. Both forces, seeing the advantages of holding the crest of Battle Mountain, fought relentlessly to capture it in a six-week-long battle.[19]