SM Energy Begins Bakken Infill Drilling – Moving to Walking Rigs

Bakken Production Grew 40% Over the Past Year
SM Energy Bakken Map

SM Energy Bakken Map | Click to Enlarge

SM Energy grew company wide production by 18% from the fourth quarter of 2011 to 2012. Strong growth was the direct result of successful development in both the Bakken (40% growth) and Eagle Ford (50% growth).

During 2012, SM completed 30 operated wells, with focus in the Bear Den, Raven, and Gooseneck prospects noted in the map. In 2013, drilling will shift almost completely to infill drilling in those areas. Exploration is complete and the company can begin pushing to improve operational efficiencies by employing walking rigs on multi-well pads. Two traditional rigs will be exchanged for walking rigs in early 2013.

Tony Best, CEO, remarked, “SM Energy had a record-breaking year in 2012 with new highs for proved reserves and annual production, completing the year with record quarterly production. These results were driven by our high rate of return oil and liquid-rich programs in the Eagle Ford shale and Bakken/Three Forks, which are expected to continue to drive our growth in 2013.”

SM Energy produced 11,900 boe/d from the Bakken in the fourth quarter of 2012 and increased proved reserves in the Rockies from 48.4 to 54.8 mmboe during the year.

The company also sold non-operated Bakken acreage as the year ended. In total, SM divested 27,000 net acres, with 6,000 net acres located in the company’s focus area.

SM now has:

  • 162,000 net acres prospective for the Bakken and Three Forks Formations
  • 81,000 net acres located in the company’s focus area

Read the company’s full press release at

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R.T. Dukes

R.T. Dukes

Managing Editor at
R.T. is the managing editor and a contributor to and His experience includes research and consulting roles where he advised major oil companies. His current life revolves around his wife, two kids, and shale plays. He has been following the Bakken since early 2006. 2503 Robinhood, Houston, TX, 77005, U.S.A. | Telephone: 832.429.4790


  1. Ellen McNeil says:

    any info on US enercorp in Sheridan County, Montana?

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