One of the main challenges at a strategic level in the counter insurgency effort in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos was the inaccuracies of the maps and the blatant lack of geographic details on key areas.
For a task force commander, knowing where the high features, rivers and potential LZ are is vital. At that time the best way to do so was to send a team of highly skilled individuals to sneak in and take note of such details. Recces are the bread and butter of Recon teams. It is even said that the true value of a team is measured on how well they can drop in and conduct a Recce. In a Recce the team needs to insert in the AO, and explore a certain amount of the area detailed in the orders. The team will then update on a regular basis with TOC via sitreps on the radio. Once the amount of the AO required is mentioned as covered in the sitreps, then the team can successfully extract.
A recce (pronounced rekee) mission must be done with deliberate attention to stealth. Although not vital, avoiding contact with the enemy is a good way to conduct a Recce for few reasons. First, your team being invisible will let you enjoy a better freedom of movement in the AO while not being bothered by search parties. Second, if the enemy knows you are in the AO and willing to fight, they will muster additional forces and seriously increase your chance of taking casualties. A team that is in a hot AO now need to think about preservation in addition to normal maneuvering tactics.