Actual Drilling relative to Permits Filed

Trying to figure out if anyone knows the answer or a source to find out what percent of “permitted” wells, and / or “confidential” wells in McKenzie County ND actually get drilled?

Hi there. Generally, North Dakota operators have very high conversion rates of permits. Conoco and Slawson have high conversion rates, but typically take longer to convert their permits into wells than some other operators.

OK; thanks. So…what might be the most likely reasoning why Slawson would drill only one gunslinger well, when another 15 are permitted? Do they usually get just one going, then come back later and drill another one, or two, or in some sort of batches, like well pad maximization?

Yeah. They likely drilled one well to hold the lease and will come back at some point in the future. Both Conoco and Slawson have a lot of economic inventory and in the case of Slawson, they don’t have any other units in this area of NE McKenzie County, so it likely makes more sense for them to drill where they have more contiguous acreage (i.e., on the Reservation). Lastly, because permits only cost $100 to renew per year, it is very little expense for the operators to keep renewing permits as they work through their inventory and high grade their acreage.

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Well, (excuse the pun), Conoco and Slawson both did come back and drill the additional 15 permitted wells, so that’s real exciting. A question - does anyone know why on the State of ND minerals site, with the Active Drilling List which is updated daily - why does the same well sometimes appear twice, usually a month or two later when it reappears? Take Gunslinger Federal #36356 for example - it showed on this list on 11/22/19, and now it shows up again on 1/7/20. Is the second listing maybe the fracking stage?

Operators will oftentimes bring a smaller rig in to first drill the surface casing and then bring in the bigger rig to drill the well to TD. That is typically why it shows up with a lag time period.