Musa Qal'eh is one of the most northerly forward operating bases (FOBs) of the British army in Afghanistan.

The remote outpost is home to some of the most seasoned units in Afghanistan including elements of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, based in Hounslow, the Royal Welsh Regiment and a detachment of 206 Squadron Royal Logistics Corp in their Mastiff armoured vehicles.

I travelled the short journey by Chinook helicopter, or flying cow as the locals call it, shortly after first light with a relief team of south London soldiers and got to witness Afghanistan’s beautiful countryside as we sped, flying at low altitudes towards the base.

Musa Qal’eh, in the heart of Taliban country, is much smaller in scale than Camp Bastion and is surrounded on all sides by satellite stations and the much smaller patrol bases (PBs).

The local Afghan people live and work a matter of metres outside the compound wall going about their daily business without much thought to the thousand British Army, Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) soldiers stationed here.

From the top of the main command building I was given a brief overview of the surrounding area by Captain Harry Cleeveley.

Cpt Cleeveley said: “Rising out of the ground to the north is the affectionately named Mount Doom, or mount Musa Qal'eh.

"Shortly around to the north-west is the Dayra-Ye Musa Qal’eh Wadi and where that cuts though Roshan Tower and Mount Musa Qal’eh is Taliban held territory.”

Around two kilometres west of enemy position is Roshan Tower, a mobile phone antenna that provides limited signal for both the Afghans and the British Army.

Protecting the tower is a detachment of International Security Assistance Force personnel with the 40 Royal Artillery Regiment in charge of one of the deadliest weapons in the British arsenal, the 105mm howitzer, or what is locally known as, the dragon gun.

The shells can travel three kilometres in less than five seconds and before the enemy has even heard it fire they are already dead, literally obliterated by the fearsome weapon.

To the north is, of Musa Qal’eh is Patrol Base (PB) Woqab.

The PB regularly comes under attack, and like Musa Qal'eh FOB is remote, dusty and far from the luxury of Camp Bastion where soldiers have running water, hot showers, air conditioning and a pizza hut.

Troops live off rations, water has to be taken in vast quantities and toilets are a hole in the ground.

Tomorrow I will be heading out on a foot patrol to walk the two hour journey travelling on foot, adjacent to the Wadi and uphill towards the base.

The dried river bed is more than six feet deep in the winter months, when snow from the mountain melts and floods the fertile green zone around the riverbed.

In places it can be more than 200 metres wide and local farmers channel parts of it off to irrigate their wheat, watermelon, tomato and of course poppy crops.

However, when it is dry it is used by the local Afghans to hold markets selling everything from carpets to cows and is a place where they meet friends and family to conduct business.

While the FOB at Musa Qal’eh lacks the luxuries of Camp Bastion, because it is so close to the enemy lines, it is a smaller, friendlier and more homely place.

I am staying in the shell of a building that was once thought to be the makings of hotel but was a taken by the Taliban during their occupation.

Walls in some of the rooms are splashed with blood, excrement and bullet holes, with remnants of the battles fought here, littering the building like pox marks.

The compound was lost to the Taliban in 2006 after local tribal leaders persuaded the army to relinquish it to their control.

Shortly afterwards, as was normally the case, Taliban fighters quickly moved back into the area and an operation was launched to retake the vital position.

Now the area is the permanent home to British forces aiding the ANA and ANP in training and the reconstruction effort.

Locals are compensated for damage done to their crops and buildings after Taliban attacks are thwarted and a good relationship between tribal leaders and the local British command have been formed.

Afghan nationals are employed in the compound and one who I met, showed me his catch of the day, two live scorpions he kept in his inside jacket pocket.

He seemed keen to show me then and was friendly and approachable and each time I saw him throughout the day he smiled and produced the two live sand scorpions from his pocket, poking and prodding them.

Nick Beavitt, from Wimbledon, a second lieutenant with the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, commands a team training the local Afghan police force, who unlike Met officers, carry machine guns, mortars and drive around in machine gun mounted pick-up trucks.

The army is trying to install a system of governance which aims to ease the people of Afghanistan out of the dark ages and into a more modern and less lawless society.

Sergeant Major John Pugh who lives in Kingston said: “You have to respect their culture, it is harsh but that is the way it is out here. That is the way they live.”

While battling the Taliban is just one aspect of the job, rebuilding schools and bettering the lives of the average Afghan, who has experienced decades of war and infighting between tribes and warlords is one of the main reasons for British involvement in the conflict.

However the question that still remains is this the best way forward for the Afghan people who, for thousands of years, have lived an existence very similar to the life they live now.

But, when you hear stories of Afghan teachers continuing to teach girls, despite daily threats via text message from the Taliban and the improving literacy rates in a country practically void of anything other than religious schools it becomes clear the average Afghan wants the ISAF forces here to prevent them being subjugated again by the tortuous Taliban and to install a system of governance that provides something for the people.

• For more from our reporter Harry Miller in Afghanistan, click here