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Friday, September 29, 2006

Patman Bros. Equipment & Maintenance Yard - Sundance Resources

There are no signs identifying the owner of this equipment -maintenance yard. However, several months ago the Patman Bros. (Sundance Resources) appeared to be working on a rig that was set up and then disappeared about as quickly as a weekend carnival. The same circle P near the base of the rig was there before.
There are 2 signs in the yard pointing directions to Rig #4 and Rig #6. This yard is about 2 miles from Blum, TX. about 3/4 of a mile NE of FM 933 on the southside of Hwy 174.

Quicksilver Rig - Looks ARE deceiving!

At a half mile away from the action, Patterson's rig on Quicksilver's 'SIDESHOW BOB' lease appears small. As you can see in the photo immediately below this one, it's NOT! This rig has just gone up in the last week and the workers are pushing pipe hard and fast. Quicksilver's presence continues to be felt in Hill county.

Quicksilver's 'SIDESHOW BOB'

Thanks to nativehill on the NARO/TX forum for setting me straight on the correct name of this lease. The rig is just north of Hwy 174, approximately 2.5 miles north of Blum. From my observations of the location and it's close proximity to the Nolan River, I originally posted that this was J-W Operating's 'Nolan River' lease.
I asked a surveyor on the ground, and he could not verify the name of the lease. Very strange!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Where there's Smoke....

Fire Departments from several small towns joined forces to contain any remaining 'hot spots' of a recent grass fire on our neighbor's property immediately north of ours. I grabbed my camera and took this shot as the fire came within 50 yards of our property line.
Just glad no one was hurt.
A relaxing Sunday afternoon turned into a blaze that consumed about 25 acres of blue stem. Neighbor was burning trash and strong winds carried embers up, up and away, spreading quickly across his property.

Fire at Devon rig in Parker Co.

Drilling site fire destroys 4 trucks
Star-Telegram Staff Writers
(Star-Telegram / Ralph Lauer)
A Schlumberger Well Services employee stands on top a fracturing pump as smoke and steam rise from adjacent equipment as firefighters spray it with water after Tuesday's fire. Schlumberger is contracted to do the fracturing of the Devon Gas well in the 7600 block of Farm Road 730 at Calhoun Bend west of Azle. The fire did an estimated $4.5 million in damage to the equipment but no one was injured.
AZLE -- Flames as high as 40 feet belched from a fire that consumed four large well-service trucks Tuesday at a drilling site in northeast Parker County, firefighters said.
The blaze near Farm Road 730 and Calhoun Bend Road, about five miles southwest of Azle, was caused by an equipment malfunction, and the well itself was not involved, said Ramona Nye, a spokeswoman for the Texas Railroad Commission in Austin.
No one was hurt, but four trucks were destroyed by the massive fire, said Murl Trainham, a firefighter with the Silver Creek Volunteer Fire Department.
Nye said an inspector for the commission was at the site. The fire, she added, was reportedly caused by a ruptured oil line on a ``frac” pump.
``It sprayed hot oil, and three adjacent frac pumps caught fire,” Nye said, adding that the pumps are typically mounted on trucks.
Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler said the blaze was reported at about 8:30 a.m. Firefighters from the Silver Creek, Aledo, Azle and La Junta fire departments responded.
The blaze was contained within about 30 minutes, but it took at least another hour to completely put it out, firefighters said.
Heavy smoke was billowing in the area, according to reports. The site is about a quarter mile from Silver Creek Elementary School, but it was not evacuated or locked down.
The well was being operated by Devon Energy, which is based in Oklahoma City, Nye said. The trucks were owned by Schlumberger, an oil field service company in Sugar Land, said Trent Lee, an operations manager for the company who was at the site. He said his company was contracted to perform hydraulic fracturing operations at the site.
Hydraulic fracturing has been done on virtually all of the 4,200 wells drill in the Barnett Shale in the last decade. It involves a high pressure injection of water into a newly drilled wellbore before gas production begins. The water penetrates through perforations in the well’s casing and inflicts tiny hairline cracks in the otherwise impermeable shale rock, allowing the natural gas to release.
Fracturing normally takes from eight hours to two or three days, depending on the complexity of the project.
Devon Energy is the largest gas producer in the Barnett Shale, having produced more than 1.2 trillion cubic feet of natural gas since it bought the pioneering Barnett Shale operations from the former Mitchell Energy of Houston in 2001. Devon has drill about 2,000 wells in the Barnett Shale since 2001.
The Barnett Shale is Texas’ largest natural gas field. In 2005 the field produced more than 460 billion cubic feet of natural gas, and production this year is running about 25 percent ahead of last year. Among land-based U.S. natural gas fields, only the San Juan Basin in northern New Mexico is larger than the Barnett Shale.
New York-based Schlumberger is one of the larger oilfield services companies in the world, employing 66,000 people in 80 countries. Services companies like Schlumberger and its rival, Halliburton, are employed by operators like Devon to do technical work on wells, including fracturing and engineering work.
Representatives of Schlumberger and Devon said they are required to file reports about the fire to the Railroad Commission.
Lee and Alesha Leemaster, a spokeswoman for Devon, both said the fire would not slow down their production in the field.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Musical Instruments at 'Abbott's Grove'

Completed in 2003, these instuments 'reside' at the old city park or the renovated 'Abbott's Grove' in Hillsboro. These instruments are quite large, and are some type of xylophones which are played with wooden, plastic or rubber mallets. Click on the link above the photo for other Hill Co. Historical markers.

Hill County Tour - Courthouse, Park, Historical Cemetery

Abbott's Grove - The old Hillsboro Park has a new look. I had not been there in two or three years. WOW!
Really looks nice. I remember playing there as a youngster, and my dad also played there as a young boy.
GREAT improvements! I was really impressed.

And what can you say about the old/new Hill County Courthouse? It's absolutely the most magnificant structure I have ever seen. Just so stately and majestic! Thank you Willie Nelson for your help in raising the donations that rebuilt this landmark after the terrible fire on January 1, 1993. See link above photos for more info!

The Sesquicentennial Musical Park

The Old Hillsboro Cemetery was made a 'Texas Historical' cemetery back in 2002. I have several distant relatives who are resting there. At least, for the moment!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Can't a fellow get some sleep?

The 'ghostly' eyes of a lone steer pierce through the dark shadows as dusk settles on a Hill County back road.

Nightfall in Hill County, TX

Nightfall off of HCR 2124 silouettes an open field at the end of another beautiful day. The cool, crisp smell of a fast approaching Autumn fills the air.

Greywolf Drilling Company - Johnson Co.

Like I said, not sure who the operator is on this lease, but it is being drilled by Greywolf Drilling Company. The lease is in Burleson, TX. right off Hwy 174, almost directly behind the new Exxon 'Tiger Farms Market.
Safety First - Has to be the motto on any well, anywhere.

Mind keeping it down out there!

Rig overlooking Prairie Springs Cemetery in Burleson, TX.
What an unusual backdrop......
Not sure who the operator is on this one, but the Barnett takes no prisoners these days.
Old Prairie Springs Historical Cemetery, Established in 1857.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Growing Infrastructure in Hill County

Gathering lines being layed on the north side of Hwy 174 just east of the Nolan River. This was either on, or very near the Segar's property.
'King' Cotton harvest along FM 933 near Aquilla.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Sights of McLennan County, TX

Off the beaten path, the country back roads reveal many different sights. This old country store/gas station was just one of many.
The Old Railroad Rd. bridge was one of my favorites. One can almost hear the faint whistle of a 'phantom locomotive' in the distance while stopped on this one-lane bridge.
You take the high road, I'll take the low. Just keep traveling in either direction long enough and you'll eventually end up back where you started.
Tried to snap this picture while driving. Not good, if you want all the details. Apparently this town has had more than one winning season in years past.
Of course what is West without the 'Czech Stop'. It might almost be worth the trip to drive down this far just for gas, and a big box of kolaches.

Nice turnout for Seminar in West

Thursday night's Barnett Shale update seminar at the West Community Center was a standing room only gathering. This picture represents about a third of those in attendance. Keith Milberger, president of Proven Concepts, Inc. addressed the crowd with an in depth presentation, followed by a lengthy question and answer period.
Very informative.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Detailed map to tonight's Seminar in West

Map provided by
A more detailed map of the location for tonight's Hill-McLennan county Barnett Shale seminar. Use this one if you need glasses like me.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Hill and McLennan Co. Seminar 9/7/06

There will be a Barnett Shale seminar Thursday, September 7th, 2006 at the West Community Center from 6-9:30 PM 205 West Tokio Road West, Texas 76991. Free Admission to the Public Pat Bullard, President of NARO-TX will be one of the featured speakers. For more information, please email Susie Lourcey at
Map provided by