Bakken Shale Drilling

Bakken Shale Rig Count Decreases by One to 191

DMR: North Dakota Hits Record Oil & Gas Production - June 2014
Bakken Oil Well

Bakken Oil Well | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count decreased by one to 191 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 193 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 19 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, North Dakota hit nearly 1.1-million b/d oil in June 2014, setting a new record, according to the Department of Mineral Resources’ (DMR) AugustDirector’s Cut. During the same month, North Dakota also had record monthly gas production (1,253,154 mcf/d), and the highest recorded number of producing wells (11,079).

Read more: North Dakota Hits Record Oil & Gas Production – June 2014

The U.S. rig count decreased by 17 to 1,896 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 330 rigs were targeting natural gas (nine more than the previous week) and 1,564 were targeting oil in the U.S. (25 less than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 192 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 183 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 193 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is one more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and ten more than the company reports in North Dakota. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 19 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs decreased by one to 191 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices stayed relatively flat from the previous week, trading at $93.57/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $80.69/bbl on Aug. 21st. The WTI-Brent opened up a bit, settling at ~$9 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.85/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 67 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 25 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 175 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 16 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 70 67 FALLON MT 0 1
WILLIAMS ND 34 35 DANIELS MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 32 33 DAWSON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 26 26 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 11 10 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 4 WIBAUX MT 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 3 3 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BURKE ND 2 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 3 3 MERCER ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by Three to 192

NDIC Plans to Hold Public Hearing to Evaluate Ways to Reduce Bakken Crude Volatility
Bakken Oilfield StorageTanks

Bakken Oilfield Storage Tanks | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by three to 192 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 194 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 16 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, the North Dakota Industrial Commission (NDIC) plans to hold a public hearing in the next few weeks to determine ways to reduce the volatility of Bakken crude before it is stored or transported.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported North Dakota officials are considering requiring oil & gas companies to treat Bakken crude before it is loaded onto trains. Stabilization, which is common in similar shale plays like the Ealge Ford Shale, is also being discussed among officials.

Read more: NDIC Considers Bakken Crude Treatment

The U.S. rig count increased by five to 1,913 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 321 rigs were targeting natural gas (five more than the previous week) and 1,589 were targeting oil in the U.S. (one more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 194 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 185 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 194 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is the same figure Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, but 9 more than the company reports in North Dakota. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 16 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased by three to 192 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices stayed relatively flat from the previous week, trading at $97.09/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $82.19/bbl on Aug. 14th. The WTI-Brent closed up a bit, settling at ~$6 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.77/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 70 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 25 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 176 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 15 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 1 rig is drilling a vertical well

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 65 70 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 36 34 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 33 32 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 26 26 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 10 11 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 WIBAUX MT 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 3 3 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 3 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
BURKE ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by Five to 189

Magnum Hunter Resources Announces its Exit from North Dakota Bakken
Magnum Hunter Resources Bakken Acreage Map

Magnum Hunter Resources Bakken Acreage Map

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by five to 189 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 193 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 23 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, Magnum Hunter announced last week that the company will sell its Divide County, North Dakota operated/non-operated properties and reallocate resources to core operations in the Appalachian Basin. Baytex Energy, Continental Resources, or Samson Resources are all likely buyers for the acreage.

Read moreMagnum Hunter Decides to Exit North Dakota Bakken

The U.S. rig count increased by 19 to 1,908 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 316 rigs were targeting natural gas (three more than the previous week) and 1,588 were targeting oil in the U.S. (15 more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 191 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 182 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 193 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is two more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 11 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 23 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased by five to 189 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices stayed relatively flat from the previous week, trading at $97.57/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $84.19/bbl on Aug. 7th. The WTI-Brent stayed flat, settling at ~$7 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.97/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 65 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 20 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 174 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 14 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 1 rig is drilling a vertical well

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 62 65 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 35 36 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 33 33 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 25 26 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 10 10 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 WIBAUX MT 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 3 3 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 2 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 3 2 WARD ND 0 0
BURKE ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by Two to 184

SM Energy Grabs 61,000 Bakken Net Acres - $330 Million
SM Energy Bakken Map

SM Energy Bakken Map | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by two to 184 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 193 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 21 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, SM Energy recently announced it will acquire approximately 61,000 net acres in Divide and Williams Counties for $330-million from Baytex Energy. The acreage is directly adjacent to the company’s Gooseneck focus area. Upon closing, the company will have ~97,000 acres in the area.

Read moreSM Energy Grabs 61,000 Bakken Net Acres – $330 Million

The U.S. rig count increased by six to 1,889 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 313 rigs were targeting natural gas (five less than the previous week) and 1,573 were targeting oil in the U.S. (11 more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 186 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 177 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 193 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is seven more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 16 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 21 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased by two to 184 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices decreased by ~$4 from the previous week, trading at $97.60/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $84.69/bbl on July 24th. The WTI-Brent opened up a bit, settling at ~$7 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.80/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 62 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 20 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 170 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 13 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 1 rig is drilling a vertical well

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 66 62 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 32 35 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 30 33 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 25 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 9 10 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 4 5 WIBAUX MT 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 2 3 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 3 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BURKE ND 7 2 WARD ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Stays Flat at 182

DOT Seeks New Rail Car Design and Bakken Crude Testing
Oil Rail Car Image

Crude Oil Rail Car | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count stayed flat at 182 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 192 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 15 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, the US Department of Transportation (DOT) proposed new rules last week for the testing of Bakken crude and better designed rail cars. Within two years, the DOT proposes phasing out older DOT-111 tank cars for the shipment of packing group I flammable liquids, which includes most Bakken crude.

Read moreDOT Seeks New Rail Car Design and Bakken Crude Testing 

The U.S. rig count increased by 12 to 1,883 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 318 rigs were targeting natural gas (three more than the previous week) and 1,562 were targeting oil in the U.S. (eight more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 184 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 178 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 192 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is eight more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 14 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 15 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs stayed flat at 182 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices decreased by ~$1 from the previous week, trading at $101.99/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $88.69/bbl on July 24th. The WTI-Brent opened up a bit, settling at ~$6 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.78/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 66 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 20 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 171 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 11 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 66 66 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 32 32 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 30 30 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 9 9 VALLEY MT 0 0
BURKE ND 7 7 WIBAUX MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 4 4 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 3 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by Five to 182

Whiting Petroleum Acquires Kodiak Oil & Gas - $3.8 Billion
Whiting Bakken Acreage Map

Whiting Bakken Acreage Map | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by five to 182 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 196 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 14 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, Whiting Petroleum announced on July 13, 2014, that it would acquire Kodiak Oil & Gas, in an all stock transaction, for $3.8 billion. The deal makes the combined company the largest Bakken/Three Forks producer, unseating Harold Hamm’s Continental Resources from the top spot.

Read moreWhiting Petroleum Acquires Kodiak Oil & Gas – $3.8 Billion

The U.S. rig count decreased by four to 1,871 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 315 rigs were targeting natural gas (four more than the previous week) and 1,554 were targeting oil in the U.S. (nine less than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 184 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 178 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 196 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is 12 more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 18 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 14 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased by five to 182 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices increased by ~$2 from the previous week, trading at $102.97/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $89.94/bbl on July 18th. The WTI-Brent closed up a bit, settling at ~$4 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $3.95/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 66 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 20 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 171 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 11 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 63 66 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 33 32 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 30 30 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 8 9 VALLEY MT 0 0
BURKE ND 5 7 WIBAUX MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 4 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 2 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 2 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by One to 177

Baytex Energy May Sell Bakken Assets
Baytex Energy Bakken Assets

Baytex Energy Bakken Assets | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by one to 177 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 190 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 18 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, Calgary-based Baytex Energy appears to be on the verge of divesting some of its assets, and the company’s Bakken acreage may soon be on the auction block. Baytex officials say the company conducted a portfolio review of assets late in the second quarter in response to a recent $2.8 billion acquisition in the Eagle Ford Shale. During that process certain assets were earmarked for divestment, which officials say would be used to pay down debt.

Read more: Baytex Energy May Sell Bakken Assets

The U.S. rig count increased by one to 1,875 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 311 rigs were targeting natural gas (flat from the previous week) and 1,563 were targeting oil in the U.S. (one more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 179 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 172 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 190 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is 11 more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 18 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 18 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased by one to 177 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices decreased by ~$3 from the previous week, trading at $100.76/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $87.44/bbl on July 11th. The WTI-Brent closed up a bit, settling at ~$6 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $4.14/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 63 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 23 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 164 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 13 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 64 63 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 32 33 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 30 30 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 8 8 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 WIBAUX MT 0 0
BURKE ND 5 5 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 2 2 MCLEAN ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 1 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 1 2 MCHENRY ND 0 0
STARK ND 3 2

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co’s (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Stays Flat at 176

EIA Says North Dakota & Texas Make Up Nearly Half of U.S. Oil Production
U.S. Oil Production

U.S. Oil Production | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count remained flat at 176 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 190 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 20 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, combined production from North Dakota and Texas made up nearly half of U.S. oil production according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA) in April of 2013.

Recently, the state of North Dakota hit the 1-million b/d mark for oil, nearly tripling its production over a three year period. The increase in production is directly related to the development of the Bakken Shale. Since April of 2011, production from the Bakken increased 19,000 b/d on average each month, according to the EIA.

Read more: North Dakota & Texas Make Up Half of U.S. Oil Production

The U.S. rig count increased by one to 1,874 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 311 rigs were targeting natural gas (three less than the previous week) and 1,562 were targeting oil in the U.S. (four more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 178 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 171 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 190 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is 12 more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 19 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 20 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs remained flat at 176 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices decreased by ~$2 from the previous week, trading at $103.68/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $90.69/bbl on July 3rd. The WTI-Brent was about the same, settling at ~$7 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $4.29/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 64 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 23 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 161 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 15 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 64 64 DANIELS MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 32 32 DAWSON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 31 30 FALLON MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 8 8 VALLEY MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 WIBAUX MT 0 0
BURKE ND 5 5 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
STARK ND 3 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 2 2 MERCER ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 1 1 MCHENRY ND 0 0
RENVILLE ND 0 1

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co’s (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by Three to 176

Enterprise Products Partners Announces New Oil Pipeline from North Dakota to Cushing
Pipeline Construction

Pipeline Construction | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by three to 176 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 192 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 11 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, Enterprise Products Partners announced at a pipeline summit in North Dakota in late June of 2014 it plans to build a 1,200 mile oil pipeline from the Bakken to Cushing, Oklahoma, a major gathering and distribution hub.The pipeline is planned to be 30 inches in diameter and would originate in Stanley, ND. Company officials said it will have a capacity of 340,000 bbls of oil and should be online by the end of 2016. The pipeline would be Enterprise’s first in North Dakota.

Read more: Enterprise Products Partners North Dakota Pipeline to Cushing

The U.S. rig count increased by 15 to 1,873 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 314 rigs were targeting natural gas (three more than the previous week) and 1,545 were targeting oil in the U.S. (13 more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 178 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 171 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 192 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is 14 more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 21 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 11 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased  by three to 176 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices decreased by ~$2 from the previous week, trading at $105.62/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $92.44/bbl on June 27th. The WTI-Brent opened up slightly, settling at ~$7 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $4.39/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 64 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 23 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 161 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 15 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 63 64 DAWSON MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 32 32 FALLON MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 31 31 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 VALLEY MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 8 8 WIBAUX MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BURKE ND 5 5 MCLEAN ND 0 0
STARK ND 3 3 MERCER ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 0 2 RENVILLE ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 WARD ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 1 1 MCHENRY ND 0 0
DANIELS MT 0 0

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co’s (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.

Bakken Shale Rig Count Increases by One to 173

North Dakota Surpasses the 1-million b/d Oil Mark in April 2014
Bakken Oil Production Forecast - NDPA

Bakken Oil Production Forecast – NDPA | Click to Enlarge

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count increased by one to 173 rigs running across our coverage area by the end of last week. The NDIC notes 189 rigs are active in North Dakota, but around 15 of those are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

In recent Bakken news, the State of North Dakota has surpassed the 1-million b/d oil mark according to the North Dakota Industrial Commission’s (NDIC) Department of Mineral Resources (DMR), thanks mostly to the Bakken Shale and Three Forks formation. The preliminary data, released in the monthly Director’s Cut in June of 2014, revealed April oil production was 1,001,149 b/d. North Dakota is second only to Texas for oil production.

Read more: North Dakota Hits the 1-Million b/d Mark

The U.S. rig count increased by four to 1,858 rigs running by the end of last week. A total of 311 rigs were targeting natural gas (one more than the previous week) and 1,545 were targeting oil in the U.S. (three more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.). 175 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 170 are in ND alone.

Not all rigs counted in our census are drilling for the Bakken, but it’s close. The NDIC estimates 95% or more of activity in this region targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.

Note: The NDIC reports 189 rigs are active in North Dakota. That is 14 more than Baker Hughes reports in the Bakken area, and 19 more than the company reports in North Dakota. The difference is likely accounted for in the number of rigs actually working, rigs that might not be serviced by Baker Hughes AND rigs in areas outside of the Bakken fairway. On any given week, a certain number of rigs are in route to the next well location or idle waiting to drill the next well. The NDIC notes that around 15 rigs are in the process of moving in and rigging up.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

The number of oil rigs increased  by one to 173 rigs running by the end of the week . WTI oil prices increased by ~$1 from the previous week, trading at $107.26/bbl on Friday afternoon. Williston Basin Sweet crude traded at $93.19/bbl on June 19th. The WTI-Brent opened up slightly, settling at ~$7 by the end of last week.

The natural gas rig count in the region held flat at zero. Natural gas futures (Henry Hub) were trading at $4.55/mmbtu by the end of last week. A little more than 10% of the production stream from the Bakken and Three Forks is attributable to natural gas and roughly half of that is NGLs.

McKenzie County continues to lead development with 63 rigs running. Dunn, Mountrail, and Williams counties are the only other counties with more than 23 rigs running each. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity is dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 158 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 15 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Bakken Oil & Gas News

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts - Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County


County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 62 63 FALLON MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 31 32 ROOSEVELT MT 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 32 31 SHERIDAN MT 0 0
DUNN ND 23 23 VALLEY MT 0 0
DIVIDE ND 8 8 WIBAUX MT 0 0
RICHLAND MT 5 5 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
BURKE ND 5 5 MCLEAN ND 0 0
STARK ND 3 3 MERCER ND 0 0
BOTTINEAU ND 2 2 RENVILLE ND 0 0
BILLINGS ND 1 1 WARD ND 0 0
DANIELS MT 0 0 MCHENRY ND 0 0
DAWSON MT 0 0

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co’s (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.

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