Denver-based Whiting Oil and Gas (Whiting) is continuing their Red River exploitation program in eastern Golden Valley County, North Dakota. The company is now attempting to push Ordovician production almost a mile north of Camel Hump Field, a Red River oil pool operated by Whiting. This reservoir, which was originally discovered in 1980 and later abandoned in 2002, was re-opened by Whiting in 2011 with drilling of the Maus #23-22, ne-sw 22-141n-104w. Completed in July of 2011, this well was given an IPP of 273 bopd, 55 mcfgpd, and 50 bwpd from Red River perforations at 12,287’–12,320’. Cumulative production for the Maus #23-22 has exceeded 88 k bo, 28 mmcfg, and 28 k bw.
Whiting has commenced drilling a northern stepout to Camel Hump Field at the Lowman #44-15, se-se 15-153n-104w, a confidential vertical Red River prospect that is slated to reach a depth near 12,300’. CanElson rig No. 40 has the contract for this venture.
The nearest exploration to the Lowman #44-15 is a half-mile to the southwest at a dry hole drilled 32 years ago by Pioneer Production. The Kautzman #1, ne-nw 22-141n-104w achieved a total depth of 12,320’ in the Red River. This failure was abandoned in 1981 after DSTs in the Gunton at 11,800’ and the Red River at 12,202’ proved to be void of hydrocarbons. An earlier test in the Madison section near 9,430’ only recovered drilling mud and saltwater.
Approximately a mile southeast of Whiting’s active Lowman #44-15 is a dry hole drilled by Dome Petroleum at the Wirtzfeld #2-23, se-ne 23-141n-104w. This attempt bottomed in the Red River at a depth of 12,361’. Prior to abandonment in 1982, the company conducted two DSTs in the wellbore. The first test, in the Duperow at 10,888’–10,917’, recovered 1,000’ of fresh water, 277’ of mud-cut saltwater, and 7,560’ of saltwater. The sampler contained 2,260 cc of water. A second test, run in the Red River across the interval at 12,168’–12,224’, yielded 90’ of ammonia and inhibitor-cut mud and 750’ of muddy saltwater, with the sampler containing 0.21 cfg, 100 cc of oil, and 2,100 cc of water. No production casing was run, and the failure was plugged.
In addition to exploiting vertical Red River potential in Camel Hump Field, Whiting has drilled two horizontal tests on the flanks of this reservoir—both are being kept confidential. On the eastern side of the field, Whiting drilled the Wirtzfield #21-24H, ne-nw 24-141n-104w, a tight hole that was projected to evaluate the horizontal Red River “D” zone at a depth of nearly 12,347’. It is believed the well’s horizontal leg terminated southeastward in the nw-se 24-141n-104w at a true measured depth of 15,282’.
Located within a 480-acre drilling unit, Whiting indicated that based on geology and seismic, the Wirtzfield #21-24H should have an ultimate recovery of 396 k bo, representing a recovery factor of 7.5 percent of the original oil-in-place. Cost to drill this shortened lateral prospect was $4.5 million with a return rate of 3-to-1. This is based on the price of oil being approximately $90 per barrel. Estimated log tops for the Wirtzfield #21-24H included the Mission Canyon at 9,376’, False Bakken at 10,506’, Three Forks at 10,559’, Duperow at 10,721’, Interlake at 11,390’, Red River at 12,134’, Red River “D” at 12,322’, Red River target at 12,347’, and the Red River “D” base was expected to come in at 12,390’.
Jumping some 3 miles to the west, Whiting has completed drilling the Maus #41-21H, nw-ne 21-141n-104w, a Red River lateral prospect that was permitted to have a true measured depth of 16,347’ and a bottom hole landing in the sw-se 21-141n-104w. Anticipated vertical log tops of this venture included the Mission Canyon at 9,283’, False Bakken at 10,407’, Scallion at 10,455’, Three Forks at 10,463’, Duperow at 10,615’, Red River at 11,980’, Red River “C” Anhydrite at 12,085’, Red River “D” at 12,175’, Red River target at 12,200’, and the Red River “D” base at 12,239’. Whiting has indicated that, based on 320-acre spacing, the Maus #41-21H should have a single-well ultimate recovery of 358 k bo.
Whiting has released no data regarding the results of either the Wirtzfield #21-24H or the Maus #41-21H.
Camel Hump Field itself has cumulated more than 938 k bo, 452 mmcfg, and 170 k bw and is currently producing from four vertical wells.