Friday, April 18, 2014

In Canada, The Three Forks Is Known As The Torquay


June 25, 2014: The Oil Voice has the same story but with some nice graphics

June 11, 2014: update on the Torquay in Seeking Alpha.

May 9, 2014: 1Q14 earnings for Crescent Point
Original Post

For background to this long post, see this earlier post on Crescent Point wells in Canada, just across the border from North Dakota. 

From an earlier post:
From the April, 2014, dockets:
  • 22225, Crescent Point, Alkabo-Bakken, 8 wells on an existing 1280-acre unit, Divide
  • 22226, Crescent Point, Wildrose-Bakken, 8 wells on an existing 1280-acre unit, Divide
  • 22227, Crescent Point, Blue Ridge-Bakken, 8 wells on each of 2 existing 1280-acre units, Williams
  • 22228, Crescent Point, Ellisville-Bakken, 8 wells on each of 5 existing 1280-acre units, Williams
  • 22229, Crescent Point, Dublin-Bakken, 8 wells each of 2 existing 1280-acre units, Williams
  • 22230, Crescent Point, Church-Bakken, 8 wells an existing 1280-acre unit, Williams
  • 22231, Crescent Point, Little Muddy-Bakken, 8 wells on each of 5 existing 1280-acre units, Williams
  • 22232, Crescent Point, Winner-Bakken, 8 wells on each of 8 existing 1280-acre units, Williams
  • 22233, Crescent Point, New Home-Bakken, 8 wells on an existing 1280-acre unit, Williams
  • 22234, Crescent Point, Wheelock-Bakken, 8 wells on an existing 640-acre unit, Williams,
8 + 8 + 16 + 40 +16 + 8 + 40 + 64 + 8 + 8 = 27 x 8 = 216 wells

A reader, in response to the earlier linked article, sends this link to a PDF file on a Manitoba survey which provides additional insight, dated August 20, 2013, titled "Bakken-Torquay: Viability -- Analyzing the geology and variability of rock properties in the Bakken-Torquay Play in southwestern Manitoba to determine its viability as a future prospect. The presentation was prepared by Michelle Nicolas, petroleum geologist of the Manitoba Geological Survey. It is 43 slides long, so lots of information. Let's get started.

Where is southwest Manitoba? Minot, North Dakota, is about 70 miles south of the Manitoba-Saskatchewan-North Dakota trisection.

Slide 4: a stratigraphic map exactly like the one I have linked at the sidebar at the right. The Torquay Formation aligns directly with the four benches of North Dakota's Three Forks formation. The Torquay Formation is between the Bakken Formation and the Birdbear Formation. Canada's Torquay Formation is composed of unit 4, which overlies unit 3, which in turn overlies unit 2, which overlies the deepest unit 1.

In southwestern Manitoba, "Big Valley Formation" corresponds to North Dakota's Pronghorn member. The three members of the Bakken formation are the same: upper, middle, and lower.

The Big Valley is isolated to two areas in Manitoba, much like Pronghorn Sand is isolated in North Dakota.

The Torquay formation edge extends all the way to Russell, Manitoba, about 190 miles north of Minot. This is a huge geographic location, which also includes the Bakken.

Importantly, the Nesson Anticline in North Dakota extends ten (10) times farther into Manitoba.

Since 1950, four Bakken-Torquay producing areas have been identified, a bit north of North Dakota.

Slide 43: it is absolutely amazing how big the Williston Basin is. The thickness of the various formations is interesting:
  • Manitoba: very thin formaitons
  • maximum Torquay thickness: 45 meters
  • average middle Bakken: 6 meters
  • Saskatchewan: thick formaitons
  • average Torquay: 87 meters
  • average middle Bakken: 46 meters
  • North Dakota: thick formaitns
  • average Torquay: 90 meters
  • average middle Bakken: 46 meters
The depth of the formations vary; mature in Saskatchean and North Dakota; immature in Manitoba.
It appears the Manitoba more shallow areas will be rather unexciting, but the deeper areas are enticing, but relatively unexplored.

The Canadian Bakken-Torquay play still seems to be centered north and west of Divide County, North Dakota, in southeastern Saskatchewan.


The reader who sent me the link made the following observations.

Torquay is just north and across the border from Ambrose, North Dakota.

The side-by-side stratigraphic graphics are superb in the linked presentation above; I agree.

The Sinclair field in the far north of the play was interesting to note. "The maps that show well horizontals for development of the Sinclair field resemble those for our McKenzie and Mountrail counties. Interestingly, laterals run in an East-West pattern."

The reader noted what I also saw: the Manitoba Bakken-Torquay plays are more anomalous than on the North Dakota side of the border. That is one reason the North Dakota Bakken has been such a success: there are sweet spots, but in general, the Bakken appears to be economical across the four, five, or six county region.