New Verdun Pad Site Near Shelby Hall

Looks like things are heating up for Verdun in the Fayette/Austin County area. They’ve just completed three wells on Wunderlich Road in Fayette County. Now they’ve just about completed a new pad site almost in Shelby on FM389 (its actually just inside Austin County). I haven’t seen any permits yet, but the pad site is in the north corner of the existing Passchendaele unit. It’s almost exactly halfway between their two existing pads in the area.

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I’m thinking the three wells you said Verdun drilled from the pad off Wunderlich Road were the initial ones permitted in what they called the Passchendaele, Cantigny and Cambrai Units. Those were all permitted in Fayette Co. although part of the Passchendaele extends into Austin.

Verdun formed two more big units last year on the other side of Shelby that they called the Tannenberg and the Gallipoli that were permitted in Austin Co. The plats they filed show the initial wells in those two units being drilled from the same drill site south of 389 where Cutoff and Skull Creek Road intersect they had used to drill the Saint Mihiel and Belleau Wood wells at the end of 2019. Those SM and BW units join the south side of the new Tannenberg and Gallipoli units and the drill site sits in the middle.

If you are seeing another pad going in near the north corner of the Passchendaele unit and near the meeting hall, it must be for more wells they plan on drilling in the three units that join in that area.

Below is a cut and paste of the five unit plats Verdun filed that I put together to see how the boundaries match up. I marked where the other two drill sites are located.

Would the new pad you are talking about be close to that rectangular area that appears got left out of the Cantigny and Tannenberg units?

So far each of the laterals Verdun has permit were located right at the edge of each unit, apparently leaving room where four, five or more wells could be added in each of them, which would probably require another drill site somewhere in the middle. If those most recent wells they drilled can do 5-6 BCF in a little over two years like the Saint Mihiel and Belleau Wood that seems pretty logical.

Dusty, the new pad site is at the north corner of Passchendaele Parcel 8A, immediately adjacent to Parcel 5, so yes it’s right smack dab in the middle of the two existing pads. The curved property line in that area is the alignment for FM389. The St. Mihiel unit is adjoining the Passchendaele Unit, so they can reach four units from the new pad from what I can see.

Interestingly, on the west drill site in Fayette County, only two of the three wells were connected and have been producing for about a month. The third well had a smaller rig on it a couple of weeks ago but the wellhead is not connected to anything. If they drilled according to the permit plats the non-producing wellhead is the Cambrai Unit, but I don’t know that for sure. Just some amateur sleuthing on my part.

This sounds good; but, I suspect these guys are chasing gas now that it has become profitable. Nice to hear, but, they are about 40 miles NE of my area. Send them to SW Fayette so we can get interested. Thanks for the update. Interest has definitely been lean for awhile.

Morning, Bigfoot. Lean? You can say that again.

But, please don’t. (lol) Actually, I have small royalties

coming from some wells in Fort Bend county that

go into Austin county. I guess I should keep aware.

Have they drilled the two wells Verdun permitted on what I’m calling the east side of Shelby?

The status on those permits shows they were spudded last November but I figured that was a portable rig they used to spud and set surface casing before they moved the deep rig over.

Yes those wells on the east side have been drilled and fracked. Looks like they’re setting up production piping now.

Hello Kraut: Nice to hear that you are still kicking. Still hot and dry here and no sign of activity moving our way toward the SW yet. Still early and high hopes!

Thanks for the report. Hadn’t been by there in a while.

About the same here, weather wise. My son has been working ‘flow back’ fairly steady for the last year. Mostly, south of San Antonio and one, presently, in east Louisiana. Another waiting for him near Freer, Tx. I wish they would move up here. Take care, Sir.

Just noticed yesterday that Verdun is setting up to frack the third well on the West Shelby pad. Don’t know if there was an issue with this well or if it was delayed for other reasons.

They’re also done spreading crushed stone for the Central Shelby pad. To me it looks like there are stakes for four wells on the pad, but I haven’t seen any permits yet.

On the East Shelby pad it looks like they’ve connected production piping for the two new wells, so there are now four active wells on that pad.

Verdun filed a permit today for the first well from that Central Shelby pad.

The plat below shows the lateral for Tannenberg 2H running along the opposite side of the unit from their first Tannenberg well. I’m guessing more applications will be appearing soon for 2H wells in the Cantigay and the Passchendaele units that are at the west side of that new pad. Drilling three or four before moving the rig seems to be the new pattern.

So far the only production reported for any of these wells were March volumes Verdun reported to the Comptroller of 183,279 mcf for the Passhendaele and 97,341 for the Cantigny. Based on what their wells east of Shelby made I’m guessing those volumes are production for a half month or less on those latest wells.

Second Verdun well permitted from what McMurdo named the Central Shelby pad. Expect some more will be coming


Verdun has now applied for permits for four wells from the Central Shelby pad. They were already seriously moving equipment in when I went by on Memorial Day.

McMurdo, appreciate the update. Verdun definitely isn’t sitting on the acreage they hold with those original wells. Since some other operators with big gas units still seem to be doing that I don’t know if that means Verdun doesn’t have much under lease that isn’t HBP, or they just think the current gas market is the time to maximize proven acreage.

Those recent permits have 2nd wells setup for the opposite side of the four units accessible from that central Shelby pad, and the spacing makes it looks like 4 or 5 more could then be added in each unit. To continue that pattern with 2nd wells on the undeveloped/east sides of the Gallipoli and Belleau Wood units it looks like they’ll need to build another pad a ways east of their original one on Cutoff & Skull Creek Rd.

Any new updates on this? How is the new drilling site coming? When will we know more about April production levels?

Verdun started drilling at the new central Shelby pad in early June. I believe production is reported to the Comptroller on the 20th of the month, but Dusty1 is the expert on that.

Verdun is still reporting those wells in “pending” status so their report dates vary, but yesterday RRC posted April production numbers for the Cantigny (that extends generally north) of 255,659 mcf with 656 bbl of condensate.

On the Passchendaele (that extends generally south) they reported April production of 413,518 mcf with 962 bbl condensate. The earlier numbers that were reported indicate both wells were only online about half the month of March.

These April numbers are in line with the first two wells Verdun drilled that were east of Shelby. Both of those earlier wells had horizontal legs that extended generally south. Each of them came on stream in December, 2019 but didn’t hit their peak month production until March, 2020 when the Saint-Mihiel made 449,304 mcf, and the Belleau Wood 322,127 mcf.

One variable between those first two wells and the new ones west of Shelby is that during their first two years of production, the Saint-Mihiel and Belleau Wood have each made about 6 BCF of gas but have had combined condensate production of less than 120 barrels, total. By comparison, the new wells to the west had combined production of 1600 barrels in one month. They’re definitely still in the dry gas category but that’s an additional kicker.

Nothing reported yet for the third well, called the Cambrai, that McMurdo said Verdun was still working on.

Anyone have updates on how the drilling is going?

My son is my eyes and ears out there for the moment. Verdun hit the ground running in late May. With four wells permitted on that pad to drill and frack I imagine it’ll be a beehive of activity through the end of the year. Their general plan has been to drill all the wells first before fracking any. I’m also interested to see where the pipeline tie-in will be. We’ll see if they’re confident enough to start building a pipeline before the wells are complete…