Help understanding my property

About 15 years ago I purchased a piece of property along with all mineral rights in reeves county. I have found the location of the entire block before it was broken up. My lot is approx. 11 acres. The legal description is as follows:

T&P RR Co BLK.55, Sec 18, ABS 5579, township 7S, SW/4 SE/4 SW/4

how does this help identify my lot (SW/4 SE/4 SW/4)?

google earth cord for the abstract lot:

31°13'28.57" N 103°46'08.57" W

I have recently started receiving more offers to buy, previously it was about one a year but the last couple months they have increased, while the offers remain low. Then this week I receive mail from Apache Corp requesting permission for a seismic 3D study to be done by Dawson Geophysical co. Its listed as "Utah Phase V". They are offering 20$ per acre.

My questions are, how do I identify my acreage?

What are the chances of minerals being found in this location, are other wells around it finding success?

What type of information can I expect to be transferred based on their study?

It looks like there is a lease already on the property, but I have never agreed to anything, can some one help explain whats going on currently with my lot?

Whats the real value of my lot, all rights owned by myself?

I am new to this, so any information that you could give would be great. Links to helpful resources that can help me specifically is always welcome. Thanks everyone


I also have it identified as

AB 5579 Blk 55-7 Sec18 t&psw/4 Se/4 Se/4s/o 1530-320-300

I understand what some of it refers to I think, can some one help me understand this better? Is Ab5579 refer to the abstract lot from an orig survey. I believe the lot was 680 acres and then sold in smaller lots when I bought mine. Also the directional information and the final number, I don't understand at the moment. How are they used?


At this time I don't see any activity or production in the surrounding area of your 11 acre lot in Section 18. I did find 3 permitted locations in the surrounding area but those were permitted from 3 to 7 years ago and never drilled.

GIS Map of Reeves County Section 18/Block 55 T7S/A-5579 and surrounding area. The RED X on the map is the location of your minerals using the definition you submitted.


This link is to Railroad Commission Public GIS(Geographic Information System) Mapping viewer system:

Clint Liles

Nick, we own mineral rights in Sec. 16, two sections to the east of yours. You can see it in the map Clint pasted. We’ve had very little interest. There are no new permits in the area. That said, I do seem to remember that Apache may have leased some property very near us in the last year or so. That owner is on this board but I can’t remember his name nor the property that was leased. Personally, we don’t have huge hopes that much will be found on our property. We are on the outer edges of the various plays, as far as we can see. But It may be different for you and I wish you the very best of luck!


Your land is located in Section 18, T7S, of the T&P RR Survey, Reeves County TX. It is also included in Abstract 5579 of Reeves County

the probability of minerals being found in the immediate area of your Section is extremely high. You are on the edge of a long known oil deposit that occurs in a sedimentary basin currently being aggressively developed by horizontal drilling. Seismic studies will help identify the edge of the deposit and how the oil bearing formations coalesce at depth.

Don't expect any technical information after the survey but if it is good data, you can expect more and higher offers and applications to drill.

There may be an existing lease. Check your deed and look for a recorded lease signed by the previous owner in the courthouse records. This is very important knowledge as it could mean tens of thousands of dollars per acre to the true value of your minerals.

Be patient, the true value of your minerals will be realized in the future after seismic and drilling.

As an experienced minerals industry person, I encourage you to cooperate with Dawson. Take the offer to a lawyer and make certain that the exploration permit is not a minerals lease in disguise. The value that the geophysical data may unlock for you is beyond phenomenal.

Same goes for Liz M. Now is not a time to sell but to lease very carefully if at all.

Gary L Hutchinson

this is what I found about a previous lease on the property. can you help me to understand it a little better? It looks like it has been expired for years at this point.

The Eppenhauer Trusts leased minerals in your abstract, as well as 2 other tracts, in 2016 to Mitchell Petroleum which is a leasing agent and was working for Apache at that time. As Apache is asking about 3-D seismic, this is probably in Apache's Alpine High area. Apache has some other leases nearby. You can tell Dawson that you will not grant a seismic permit until your minerals are under lease. Maybe then you will get a lease offer.

More great information. After reviewing the paperwork it is very clearly just a 3d survey. How often do they do these types of surveys? Is it cheap and easy enough that they just go all over, or are they typically following a path with expectations? Do they survey pieces at random or does it tend to be done with direction?

3-D survey is an expensive process and the intention is to cover 100% of an outlined area and will pick up information on many depths. For example, there is the cost of paying surface owners per acre for damages, the landmen, the first wave of people to grid and chart the topography and the crews and trucks to conduct the seismic. It is a very exacting process and planning. Big preference to have as little surface as possible off-limits. The resulting data can be very valuable. Halliburton is conducting a massive 3-D seismic project in Ward, Reeves and Pecos counties and will hold the data in a library for licensing to oil companies for use. Those companies will have to provide their own interpretation of the raw data, which can also be costly, particularly if it is a small company that has to hire an outside expert. Possibly Apache will sell the data to a company for its seismic data library and be able to recoup costs.

So if they are doing 3d studies is it simply to map the entire area or do they tend to aim these at areas they have higher suspicion of developing?


They are looking for the subsurface escarpment of the Delaware Basin. The thicker oil bearing zones will be deeper in the basin and the direction of drilling along the slopes horizontally will be measured by 3-D seismic. They will be looking for normal faults that offset producing formations. The basis for development potential is always founded in geology . Seismic data gives a better guess of the geometry or shape of the subsurface geology and is used to avoid wasting tens of millions of dollars in determine geometry by drilling. If companies guess without science applications, they won't be in business long.

Gary Hutchinson

Hey Nick - there are a lot of questions and I will help how I can.

First, in terms of legal description it helps if you think about drawing lines through the square section. Then work backwards... so SW/4 SE/4 SW/4 is the southwest quarter of the southeast quarter of the southwest quarter. Meaning your first place to look is the SW quarter of the section (~160 acres). Then of that square, identify the SE quarter (~40 acres) and then the SW quarter of that square (~10-11 acres depending on total section size).

As for what you can receive from the geophysical survey, usually they don't give you anything. The survey helps them decide if they want to lease/drill in the area of your acreage. I typically will not sign a seismic permit without first being under lease because it can give up some of your negotiating power. With your small lot they will see the bigger picture around yours regardless. I would doubt that your property is under lease unless you don't have all of the mineral rights or executive rights. Only a full title examination can determine that.

In that area minerals are prospective for mineral value but it is an area that is not fully delineated in terms of what kind of value. If your property is accessible and you have surface and minerals then you may have some value to someone that would want to put a saltwater disposal well on your place as well.

As for what the actual value is, indeterminable at this point. The only way to know for sure is to drill a well and see what you find.

I hope this helps a little bit - Travis