Ridgecrest keeps no standing military or police force, but it is not without its defenses. Its primary advantage is its geographical location. Approaches from the south can only come through a mountain pass that is well-patrolled by rangers and others. A few watch points equipped with alarm fires are situated to give at least a half day's notice of any incursions by gnolls or other forces from within the mountains. All other sides have the advantage of relatively unobstructed views of any approaching force.
Besides this, its presence on a rounded press of earth affords it some protection as well, though it is nothing a determined force could not overcome. The easiest approach into the town is also its most watched if only from the sheer number of eyes of merchants and residents alike.
No real walls or palisades surround the town, though there are a few barricades and defensive barriers around the periphery and the main approach road, but they are largely unmanned. The one exception to this is a fortified stone wall and gate that can completely block the mountain pass. Battlements atop this wall allow for archers and other first-line defenses to be brought to bear upon would-be invaders. If the gate is breached, there is an open yard behind it created by another similar wall and gate that can trap invaders within a confined space. The second wall has never been breached in the history of Ridgecrest, though the number of attempted invasions can be counted on one hand. Both gates remain open at all times except in times of assaults. Despite this rather formidable barrier, Ridgecrest could not repel a sustained siege, and it has no effective defenses against siege machines of any sort.