U.S. Gains More Rigs; Bakken Shale Rig Count Waffles


The Bakken-Three Forks rig count fell this week, with Baker Hughes reporting 43 rigs running across our coverage area by midday Friday.

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A total of 877 oil and gas rigs were running across the United States this week, an increase of seven over than last week. 173 rigs targeted natural gas (two more than the previous week) and 703 were targeting oil in the U.S. (six more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.) 43 of the rigs active in the U.S. were running in North Dakota.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

Bakken oil rigs were at 43 this week with Bloomberg reporting WTI oil prices dipping to $46.22 on Friday afternoon. The Bakken has zero natural active gas rig in the area this week with futures trading at $3.27/mmbtu by midday.

McKenzie County leads production in the region with 23 rigs running this week. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity continues to be dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 43 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Rig Count by County

Bakken Shale Rig Count by County

Bakken Shale Rig Count by County


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.