Abstract

Since late 1995 renewed interest in the Rockhouse Field of the Uintah Basin has been driven by the remarkable success of an operator in the Wasatch gassands in Uintah County, Utah. The area of interest is located in 11 S 23E some50 miles S of Vernal, Utah.

United Utilities Corporation (United), a Vernal-based company, first drilled here in June 1995 and saw limited success on the Lapaglia # 1. Persistence paid off through the combined efforts of geologists, production engineers and stimulation design personnel to bring on five of the next seven wells with production ranging from 2.9 MMCFD (177 day average) to 8.2 MMCFD (23 day average). Multiple intervals of the Wasatch are providing the bulk of the hydrocarbon with some contribution from the Mesaverde. Challenges with zone selection, complex geology, water invasion and stimulation have been overcome to make this recent production a true anomaly in the area.

This paper will chronicle the recent events of this field and describe themethods and technology used to discover and recapture the enormous potential of this historic gas field.

Introduction

The Wasatch Formation has long been a source of hydrocarbons in the form of natural gas and erode oil in various parts of the Uintah Basin covering Uintahand Duchesne Counties, Utah. The gas play has been especially attractive through the years because of its occurrence at moderate depths (4000' –7000')and the infrastructure of gas transmission that has been laid in the Basin throughout the years. United saw that this horizon had potential in the Rock house gas field located in T11S, R23E, Uintah County, Utah, approximately 50 miles southeast of Vernal, Utah (Fig. 1). This area is bounded to the east and southeast by the Douglas Creek Arch and Uncompahgre Uplift, respectively. Tertiary and Cretaceous non-marine sandstones provide reservoirs for large volumes of natural gas in the southeastern portion of the Uintah Basin. The Oil Springs gas field lies to the southeast and the Natural Buttes oil and gas field lies to the northwest of the Rock house gas field.

An understanding of this gas play should include the history of the field, the deposition geology and the completion techniques used in the revival of the Rock house Field.

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