Bakken Shale Region Gains Rigs

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count gained three this week, with Baker Hughes reporting 35 rigs running across our coverage area by midday Friday.

In recent Bakken news, Hess Corporation has announced it will increase E&P spending for 2017, including adding more Bakken rigs. 

Read more: Hess Corp to Add Bakken Rigs

A total of 693 oil and gas rigs were running across the United States this week, 35 over last week. 142 rigs targeted natural gas (six more than the previous week) and 551 were targeting oil in the U.S. (29 more than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.)  35 of the rigs active in the U.S. were running in North Dakota.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

Bakken oil rigs were at 35 this week with Bloomberg reporting WTI oil prices increasing slightly to $53.22 on Friday afternoon. Prices for WTI-Brent dipped per barrel to $55.49. The Bakken has zero natural active gas rig in the area this week with futures trading at $3.20/mmbtu by midday.

McKenzie County leads production in the region with 15 rigs running this week. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity continues to be dominated by horizontal drilling:

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

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.

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