If you've been running air recon missions, then they'll show up on the battles. You should assume that Q-Ball is looking at them, and has an idea that you're focusing on it. However, boots on the ground will let you know whether there's anything in the two hexes (rough, and the town hex 1NE from it) simply by moving a divisional unit into your furthest east RR hex. If you flip the control of the next RR hex, then there is nothing in the other two. This way, you don't tip your hand prematurely by running a boatload of air recon in the hex, and having those air recon icons bring his attention to the potential gap.
More probably is that his forces are lined up in the four hexes one row back, forming a slight cul-de-sac. He's probably entrenched back there better than he would be, if he had moved forward. Again, boots on the ground can do a better recon of the hexes, and if you do like Flavio mentioned, break down a Cav Corps into divisions, you can run in, check out the defenders and run back without alarming Q-Ball to your intent. All he will (might) see would be a conversion of hexes that didn't exist last turn. Players generally don't notice no-man's land gap flips as much as they notice recon icons, and battle icons. Be sneaky and check it out before commiting to an operation that may not go anywhere.