The most significant development in Utah was the January 1, 1966, completion of the Phillips Petroleum Company’s “A”-1 Bridger Lake Fork well in Summit County. The well was tested for 2,753 b/d of 40.3° API gravity oil.
Drilling activity for 1965 in Utah decreased from 1964. There were 37 fewer wells and 233,422 less feet drilled. It is estimated that the number of wells to be drilled in 1966 will be fewer than those completed in 1965. However, the total footage will be about the same.
Since Utah reached its peak production in 1959, the state has experienced a continued drop in oil production of about 3 million bbls. per year. This rate of decline was observed for 1965, and will be about the same for 1966.
The Uinta basin in Utah was the only geologic province that remained active as a result of several successful wildcat completions. These discoveries were significant because they expanded the Red Wash field into a belt of production that presently extends for 50 mi.
Although exploration for conventional oil fields has declined in recent years, a great upturn in drilling activity became apparent in the evaluation of numerous oil shale and bituminous sandstone deposits of Utah. Shell Oil Company presently is conducting a steam-injection pilot flood in the Sunnyside area and two additional thermal recovery projects are pending.
Drilling activity in Nevada has been concentrated in the Eagle Springs oil field. Presently there are 10 producing wells which have proved the existence of 800 productive acres. Elsewhere, Gulf Oil Corporation is drilling the fifth well in its current series to evaluate the stratigraphy and petroleum potential of various basin valleys in east-central Nevada. It has been reported that Gulf Oil Corporation will drill several additional wells.