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Humble Oil Company (now Fxxon) first acquired the Gato Canyon Unit leases in Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (POCS) Sale #P4 in 1968. Exxon drilled three wells and two redrills to explore Lower Miocene and Oligocene age sandstone reservoirs (see figure 5). These wells did not find any significant accumulations of oil or gas in these targets and were plugged and abandoned. However, before abandoning the last well drilled, the OCS P-0186 #3, Exxon tested the Middle and Upper Miocene age Monterey formation. The tested intervals produced oil but the formation fluids did not flow to the surface and the well was considered to be nonproductive. In the light of recent knowledge gained of Monterey reservoir performance, a reevaluation of the test data indicates that the P-0186 #3 was a potentially productive well. Exxon then turned its attention to exploration of the giant Hondo, Pescado and Sacate fields. No more wells were drilled on the Gato Canyon structure and the leases expired at the end of the five-year term.

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