Tracking the metrics for horizontal drilling points to another fundamental change on the land rig scene. Specifically, the number of rigs drilling horizontally for oil totaled 302, according to the latest issue of The Land Rig Newsletter’s Biweekly Report. That compares with 107 such rigs at this time last year. Oil targets comprise 34% of all horizontal drilling, up from 18% last year.
Texas was a substantial source of the increase in oil-directed horizontal drilling. In fact, 95 of the 195 added rigs were in Texas. Not a total surprise, given the strength of the Eagle Ford and growing activity in the Barnett Combo play. The Bakken was another major source of growth, doubling the oil-directed horizontal rig count in North Dakota to 114 as of January 28. Other states making meaningful gains include New Mexico with 19 and Oklahoma with 7. In Oklahoma, the Granite Wash and Cana Woodford are likely sources of growth. In New Mexico, recent developments in the Bone Spring/Avalon Shale appear likely to drive the state’s horizontal oil count even higher.