AUSTIN, TX -- (Marketwire) -- 09/09/10 -- Brigham Exploration Company (NASDAQ: BEXP) announced the completion of four Bakken wells in its Ross and Rough Rider project areas. To date, Brigham has completed 32 long lateral high frac stage wells in North Dakota with an average early 24-hour peak flow back rate of 2,643 barrels of oil equivalent. Brigham also provided an operations update on its drilling and completion activities in its core 198,400 net acres in the Williston Basin.
High Rate Williston Basin Bakken Completions
In the Ross project area in Mountrail County, North Dakota, Brigham announced the completion of the Wright 4-33 #1H, which was completed with 38 fracture stimulation stages, at an early 24-hour peak flow back rate of 3,660 barrels of oil equivalent (3,097 barrels of oil and 3.38 MMcf). The Wright is located in the northwestern portion of the Ross project area and is approximately four miles to the west of the Ross Alger 6-7 #1H, which was completed with 32 fracture stimulation stages and had an early 24-hour peak flow back rate of 3,070 barrels of oil equivalent. Brigham maintains an approximate 88% working interest in the Wright. Brigham has completed eight long lateral high frac stage wells in Ross at an average early 24-hour peak flow back rate of approximately 3,333 barrels of oil equivalent.
In the Rough Rider project area, Brigham announced the completion of three wells, all of which were located in Williams County, North Dakota, at an average early 24-hour peak flow back rate of 2,150 barrels of oil equivalent. The Weisz 11-14 #1H, Abe Owan 21-16 #1H and the Sukut 28-33 #1H produced at early 24-hour peak flow back rates of 2,278 (2,003 barrels of oil and 1.65 MMcf), 2,213 (1,983 barrels of oil and 1.38 MMcf) and 1,959 (1,752 barrels of oil and 1.24 MMcf) barrels oil equivalent, respectively. The Weisz, Abe Owan and Sukut were completed with 37, 37 and 32 fracture stimulation stages, respectively. Brigham's working interests in the Weisz, Abe Owan and Sukut are approximately 52%, 57% and 42%, respectively. The Sukut was completed with U.S. Energy Corp. (NASDAQ: USEG) and Brigham will back in for a portion of USEG's working interest in the Sukut after payout of the well. Brigham has completed 24 long lateral high frac stage wells in Rough Rider with an average early 24-hour peak rate of approximately 2,413 barrels of oil equivalent.
Williston Basin Drilling and Completion Update
Brigham's accelerated development of its core operated acreage in its Rough Rider and Ross project areas is proceeding with four operated rigs running in Rough Rider and one operated rig running in Ross. Brigham's sixth operated rig is expected to arrive mid-October and will drill locations in the Ross project area. Rigs seven and eight are expected to arrive in January and May 2011, respectively.
Brigham currently has one well fracing and 11 wells waiting on completion. Given additional access to a shared frac crew, Brigham's pace of completions is expected to accelerate this month. It is estimated that Brigham will fracture stimulate and bring on line to production approximately six wells per month beginning this month. In the first quarter 2011, additional fracture stimulation capacity is expected to be added. At that time, Brigham estimates that approximately eight wells per month will be fracture stimulated and brought on line to production.
Bud Brigham, the Chairman, President and CEO, commented, 'We're manufacturing high rate Bakken and Three Forks crude oil wells on a consistent and repeatable basis in our core 198,400 net acres. Since innovating and developing our long lateral high frac stage wells in early 2009, we've completed 32 wells in North Dakota at an average early 24-hour peak rate of approximately 2,643 barrels of equivalent. Importantly, the pace of completions will step up this month and we anticipate fracing and bringing on line to production six wells per month. Early next year, we expect to step up the pace of completions again and, at that juncture, we anticipate fracing and bringing on line to production eight wells per month.'
Bud Brigham continued, 'Important initiatives in our core acreage are progressing as envisioned. We recently completed drilling operations on our State 36-1 #2H Three Forks well in Rough Rider. We were very pleased with our initial viewing of the State 36-1 #2H core and the well had good shows while drilling. We'll frac the well in the second half of October or early November. In our Brad Olson 9-16 spacing unit, which is also located in Rough Rider, we completed drilling operations on our #2H Bakken infill well and are in the process of running our horizontal liner in our #3H Bakken infill well. We'll fracture stimulate the Brad Olson #3H infill well in October, which will be monitored with microseismic to evaluate frac wing performance. We currently plan to fracture stimulate the Brad Olson #2H in late-November.'
Bud Brigham concluded, 'Our staff is doing a tremendous job managing our high rate of growth. Our continuing ramp up in drilling and completion activity over the next five to six months will be a significant driver for higher levels of high margin crude oil production and reserve growth that will benefit our stockholders.'
About Brigham Exploration
Brigham Exploration Company is an independent exploration, development and production company that utilizes advanced exploration, drilling and completion technologies to systematically explore for, develop and produce domestic onshore oil and natural gas reserves. For more information about Brigham Exploration, please visit our website at www.bexp3d.com or contact Investor Relations at 512-427-3444.
Forward-Looking Statement Disclosure
Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this news release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Important factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements include initial production rates which decline steeply over the early life of wells, particularly our Williston basin horizontal wells for which we estimate the average monthly production rates may decline by approximately 70% in the first twelve months of production, our growth strategies, our ability to successfully and economically explore for and develop oil and gas resources, anticipated trends in our business, our liquidity and ability to finance our exploration and development activities, market conditions in the oil and gas industry, our ability to make and integrate acquisitions, the impact of governmental regulation and other risks more fully described in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by use of terms such as 'may,' 'will,' 'expect,' 'anticipate,' 'estimate' and similar words, although some forward-looking statements may be expressed differently. All forward-looking statements contained in this release, including any forecasts and estimates, are based on management's outlook only as of the date of this release, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of subsequent developments or otherwise.