E&P Spotlight: Alpine High Revisited

RED President Steve Hendrickson looks back at the development of the Alpine High discovery in the southern Delaware Basin and what would need to improve to make the Permian shale play viable.

Steve Hendrickson, Ralph E. Davis Associates
E&P Spotlight: Alpine High Revisited

The discovery of the Alpine High play in the southern Delaware Basin was announced by Apache Corp. (now APA Corp.) in 2016.  (Source: APA Corp.)

The discovery of the Alpine High play in the southern Delaware Basin was announced by Apache Corp. (now APA Corp.) in 2016. Over the next several years they drilled approximately 225 horizontal wells but decided to suspend further development in 2020. Now that those wells have been in production for a few years and have sufficient data for decline curve analysis, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at their performance.

Most of the wells were drilled in 2018 and 2019, and there have been only two wells placed in production since then. There are some potentially productive formations in the play from the Bone Springs, through the Wolfcamp, and down to the Woodford Shale. Using Enverus data as the basis of my review, I noted that most of the wells were identified as “Siluro-Devonian,” which I believe are likely Woodford completions. The second largest group was the Woodford wells, and together, these groups accounted for about two-thirds of the wells with a reported landing zone. Due to the complex geology and the time required, I didn’t try to determine the landing zone of those that weren’t provided or confirm the others.

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