The Bears Paw Mountains

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					May 2007

Friday, May 18
MGS Friday Afternoon Club
“Cost Effective 3D Seismic
for Shallow Gas Structures”,
Geophysicist Eric Johnson,
4:30 Billings Petroleum Club

Wednesday, May 23
MGS Speaker Luncheon
Jesse Melick, MSU PhD
GradStudent, Research
Project:Basin-wide Flow
Connectivity in the Powder
River Basin

                                                   The Bears Paw Mountains
                               The Bears Paw Mountains run for 40 miles from east to west along Montana’s
                               highline between the towns of Havre and Chinook. The mountains are
                               composed of gravity slide fault blocks produced by structural deformation of
                               Cretaceous sediments during Tertiary igneous activity emplacing the Little
All meetings are held          Rockies porphyry stock and associated laccoliths, dikes and sills. Historically,
at the Petroleum Club          the province has been a focus of precious metals prospecting, and more recently,
at 11:45 a.m. unless
otherwise noted.
                               with the use of complex seismic modeling, successful gas exploration. Billings
                               Geophysicist Eric Johnson will explain how the use of 3-D seismic has been
                               utilized to discover prolific shallow gas fields at the MGS Friday afternoon club
                               talk on May 18 at 4:30 at the P-club.
Members who do not
receive an e-mail reminder
can RSVP by phone by
calling Doretta Brush at
Ballard Petroleum
(406) 259-8790.

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History of Geology Florence Bascom
Geologists know Florence Bascom (1862-1945) as “the first woman geologist in
America”. Though Bascom was the second woman to earn a Ph.D. in geology,
(Mary Holmes earned a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Michigan in
1888), the title is fitting. Bascom was the first woman hired by the USGS, (1896),
the first woman to present a paper before the Geological Society of Washington
(1901), the first woman elected to the Council of the Geological Society of America
(1924), and the first woman officer of the GSA, serving as vice president in 1930.
She was an associate editor of The American Geologist (1896-1905), and a four-
starred geologist in the first edition of American Men of Science (1906), which
meant her colleagues considered her among the country’s 100 leading geologists.
After joining the faculty of Bryn Mawr College, she founded the college’s geology
department, which became a focus of training for some of the most accomplished
female geologists of the early 20th century.

In 1889, Bascom was permitted to take graduate classes at John Hopkins University,
sitting behind a screen in classes so as “not to disrupt the male students”. Florence
must have been encouraged by her research advisor, G.H. Williams, who wrote in a             Florence Bascom and associates on a geologic
                                                                                             field trip through the Grand Canyon in the
letter, ”…you better put a stone or two in your pockets to throw at those heads that         early 1900’s.
are thrust out of windows”. She was granted a Ph.D. in 1893.

Cost Effective 3D Seismic for Shallow Gas Structures –
North-Central Montana
Eric H. Johnson, Johnson Geophysical

Since 2004, cost-effective, low-fold 3D seismic surveys have been utilized to exploit a prolific
shallow gas area that surrounds the Bearpaw Mountains in north-central Montana. Located in Hill
and Blaine counties, the area has produced over 600 BCFG from the Cretaceous Eagle Sandstone,
at depths ranging from about 500 ft to 1,400 ft. This is an area with historically low exploration costs. Dry
holes average about $50,000 and small operators strive to keep seismic costs low, in line with drilling costs. Low-fold 3D
seismic surveys are a way to provide 3D structural imaging at a reduced cost.
The intriguing structures flanking the Bearpaw Mountains were created by massive gravity sliding on a detachment zone
at the top of the Cretaceous Niobrara Shale. Compression and thrust faults produced ribbons of “pop-up” structures that
extend for 30 miles to the north and south of the Bearpaw Mountains. Fault traps range in size from less than 40 acres to
over 640 acres, from which the Eagle Sandstone can yield 100 MMCFG to over 1 BCFG from a single well.
The 3D seismic data are only 1- or 2-fold above 1,000 ft deep, but the complex fault trends and structural traps in the Eagle
Formation are imaged surprisingly well due to the contrasting reflectivity of the shallow strata. Seismic data fold increases
with depth, to 4-fold at 1500 ft deep and over 30-fold below 4000 ft deep, where Mississippian Lodgepole mounds have
been clearly imaged. The mounds have not been evaluated adequately by drilling, but oil fields have been established in
the overlying Jurassic Sawtooth Formation. The oil is trapped in structural closures formed by drape over the mounds and
surrounding compaction.

2006-2007 OFFICERS                      BOARD OF DIRECTORS      COMMITTEES
President                               Duncan McBane           Editor:Pat Lemke           259-8790    MGS Golf Tournament
  Jay Shearer                247-4451   Steven W. VanDelinder   Advertising:                            Keven Reinschmidt        259-8790
1st Vice President                      Donald W. Wirth          Robert Schalla            294-3525    Membership:
  Robert Schalla             294-3525   Betsy Campen            Continuing Education:                   Brad Thompson            245-6248
2nd Vice President                                               Joe Carlisle              294-6222    Northern Rockies
  Pat Lemke                  259-8790                           Endowment:                             Geologic Data Ctr:
Treasurer                               AAPG REPRESENTATIVES     John Tonnsen           303-518-3233    Rita Frasure             247-7349
  Brad Thompson              245-6248   ROCKY MOUNTAIN REGION   Education:                             Publication Sales:
Secretary/Website Coordinator           Don French               Betsy Campen              652-1760     Doretta Brush            259-8790
  Andrew Urie                245-6248   Dick Findley            Field Trips:                           Social:
Past President                                                   David Lopez               657-2632     Betsy Campen             652-1760
  Jon Reiten                 657-2630
                                                                      The Bears Paw Mountains
                                                                      The Bears Paw Mountains, (or Bearpaw Mountains, depending
                                                                      on which etymology you choose) is part of a larger geologic
                                                                      area known as the Central Montana Alkalic Province, which
                                                                      extends from Yellowstone Park to the northeast Canadian
                                                                      border, and includes many of the isolated “island” mountain
                                                                      ranges through central and northern Montana. These ranges
                                                                      were formed when late Tertiary igneous activity intruded the
                                                                      Little Rocky stock and several smaller laccoliths, doming
                                                                      the overlying country rock and creating a complex system of
                                                                      folding and faulting with concurrent injection of molten rock
                                                                      producing dikes, sills and brecciated mineralized zones.

                                                           The oldest rocks in the Little Rockies-Bearspaw complex are
       Baldy, the Bears Paw’s highest mountain, elevation 6916 feet
                                                       Precambrian gneiss and schist overlain by Cambrian Flathead
sandstone and shales. Ordovician dolomite and Devonian through Mississippian limestone and shales, including massive
cliff forming outcrops of Mission Canyon are exposed vertically as flatirons along the mountain front. Gravity slide fault
blocks of Cretaceous sediments producing numerous pop-up structures have proven to be compelling natural gas targets on
the flanks of the mountains.

The core of the Little Rockies is composed of syenite porphyry, a rare high alkaline igneous rock suite, sometimes associated
with gold and silver mineralization. Syenite is a coarse-grained intrusive igneous rock with the same general composition as
granite but with less than 5% quartz. Syenites are typically formed in thick continental crust areas associated with Cordilleran
subduction zones where granitic source rock is subjected to a low degree of partial melting, producing a potassium rich and
silica undersaturated molten rock.

In June 1878, a gold rush occurred in the Bears Paw mountains, which at the time was within the boundaries of the
Blackfeet Indian reservation. For most of the 1880’s, placers were operated illegally on reservation land and no production
was officially recorded. A good claim was said
to produce about $3-$4 a day in placer gold per
man, while an excellent claim would produce up
to $6 per day. In 1888, part of the reservation
was opened to miners and a second gold rush
occurred. Gold, silver, copper and lead have all
been discovered in various mineralized zones
scattered throughout the mountains, but with
limited economic success. The mines in the
Bearspaw were essentially abandoned and closed
by 1910.

Underground gold mining in the Little Rockies
at the Zortman and Landusky mines began in
the 1880’s. In 1895 part of the mountain was
purchased in the Grinnell Treaty from the Fort
Belknap reservation for mining. The mine operated
sporadically from the 1920’s to 1959, and was the
first mine in the U.S. to use the cyanide leaching
process. In 1977 open pit leach operations were
begun, extracting 117 million tons of ore over an
area of 800 acres. By 1991, environmental issues
closed the mine. Though total production figures
are not available, economic limits of the operation
in the 1980’s were defined by ore containing about
an ounce of gold per ton of rock.
July MGS Tensleep Field Trip

July 9 and 10 are the dates for this years’ second MGS Field Trip entitled, “Pennsylvanian Tensleep Sandstone
Reservoirs in the Northern Bighorn Basin”. David Lopez, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology, and Steve
VanDelinder, Ballard Petroleum, will be the trip leaders. This will be a one-day trip (July 10), with a two-hour
presentation (w/ refreshments) at the Crowne Plaza Hotel the night before.

Thanks to a grant from the DOE there will be no charge for this field trip, which includes transportation, lunch
and refreshments. However, participation will be limited to 30 people, therefore pre-registration will be required.
More information about the trip and a registration form will soon appear at the MGS website. –

 The Language of Science                                           PRICES
 Nonscientists should take warning that ordinary language          April 27, 2007
 undergoes modification to a scientific form when applied          NYMEX CRUDE OIL $66.46/bbl
 to earth science. Concepts of earth processes and their
 interpretation, especially paleontology and global warming,       NATURAL GAS SPOT $7.831/MMBTU HENRY
 are particularly affected. Following are a few examples:          HUB
 Ordinary Form                  Scientific Form
 unlikely                       quite possibly
 perhaps                        undoubtedly                                   NORTHERN ROCKIES
 suggest                        overwhelming evidence                          Geologic Data Center
 feasible                       positive proof                               HISTORICAL INFORMATION
 possible                       undeniable fact                                  IS OUR SPECIALTY
                                                                        Including a collection of sample logs, mud logs
                                                                         and company reports available nowhere else.
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                                                                              P.O. Box 362, Billings, Montana 59103
                                                                            Phone – (406) 247-7349 or (406) 373-6438
     The Annual Gary Kabeary                                                       e-mail:

         Golf Tournament
        is scheduled for the
             13th of July
                                                               Geology Quotable Quote:
          with a 1:00 p.m.                                     “In geology, it’s not always whether you are right
       shotgun start, at the                                   or wrong, but whether you are reasonable or un-
       Laurel Golf Course.                                     reasonable.”
                                                               –Dr. Octavian Catuneanu during the February
                                                               MGS Sequence Stratigraphy Course
Energy Myths and Reality
BP CEO Lord John Brown, International Petroleum Week, London

The general public has many misperceptions about the realities of energy production by the major oil producers as well as
small independent operators. Energy security, world reserves, industry profits, climate change and alternative energy are all
hot topics. Lord John Brown, CEO of British Petroleum, in an address at International Petroleum Week in London, cited
several examples and explained why they are not true.

The first myth is a popular belief that oil prices are arbitrarily set high by the industry to extract huge windfall profits and
exploit a vulnerable consumer. The reality is very different, said Browne. In the five years ending in 2004, more than $550
billion has been invested in exploration, development and production of oil and natural gas by the world’s top 50 private
energy companies.

Lord Browne noted that a second, related myth holds that the industry simply pockets its extra profits. The reality is that
companies reinvest in securing tomorrow’s energy and return the rest to shareholders. In BP’s case, the company reinvested
$13.9 billion of $26.7 billion operating cash it generated a year ago and returned $19.2 billion to shareholders in the form
of dividends and buybacks.

Another myth is that the world is running out of oil and gas and “we are walking towards the edge of the cliff,” says Browne.
The idea that oil is running out is simply untrue. The reality is that much of the oil and gas yet to be recovered is controlled
by governments and not private companies. Often, these governments have their own interests, many of which don’t align
with the interests of energy consumers.

Ultimately, the challenge facing the industry is how to provide clean, reasonably priced energy that can be supplied to an
open market, free of the risks of political interference. To meet that challenge, the industry is well equipped, says Browne.
It has financial strength, a proven ability to adapt to changing circumstances, advancements in technology, and the global
reach needed to match supply with demand.

So, the next time someone asks if your company caps new oil discoveries to “wait until the price of oil goes up”, tell
them what the drilling and plugging costs run for an uneconomic well. Then tell them if they want to pay interest on the
investment until the price of oil goes up enough to make the well economic, you’ll give it to them.

                                                              2007 Field Conference and Guidebook
                                                            The theme of the 2007 WGA Field Conference to be held
                                                            August 2-5 will be “The Powder River Basin: From the
                                                            Margins Looking In”. The technical session will be held on
                                                            Thursday, August 2, at the Parkway Plaza in Casper. Fol-
                                                            lowing the technical session, a field trip on August 3 - 5
                                                            will circle the basin with excursions to the interior. A
                                                            guidebook will include papers both specific to the confer-
                                                            ence and relevant to understanding Wyoming geology.

                    Call for Conference Presentations                          Call for Guidebook Papers
               The WGA is soliciting presentations on subjects         In conjunction with the Field Conference, WGA
               relevant to the conference topic. These presentations   will publish a guidebook, “Wyoming Geology” and
               are expected to be 20 minutes in length with a ques-    welcomes submissions on subjects preferably, but
               tion and answer period to follow. The deadline for      not necessarily, consistent with the theme of the
               abstracts is June 29, 2007.                             Field Conference. The deadline for submission is
                                                                       March 1, 2007.
                          Abstracts should be e-mailed to:                       Abstracts should be e-mailed to:
        , phone (307) 259-5721  , phone (307) 265-9199
Karen Porter – June Cretaceous Field Trip
The MGS will be revisiting Cretaceous outcrops this summer on a field trip entitled “Marine Cretaceous Reservoirs
in Central and Northern Montana”. This trip was originally run in conjunction with the 2006 AAPG-Rocky
Mountain Section Meeting. However, one day of the original trip was rained out and additionally, a number of
MGS members were unable to participate in the trip due to scheduling conflicts. So the decision has been made
to re-run the trip this summer with the hope of more cooperative weather and to give members a second chance
to attend.

The field trip will be led by Karen Porter, Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology and Jennie Ridgley, U.S.G.S.
(retired). Because of certain logistical limitations, the trip will not follow the usual MGS field trip format of
participants providing their own transportation and lodging. Rather, the trip will be run using rental vehicles with
two nights lodging, lunches and publications included in the price.

The trip will depart Billings early on the morning of June 15 (Friday), stop to examine Upper Cretaceous outcrops
near Winnett and Lewistown and end in Chinook (just east of Havre). On Saturday we will drive to the Sweet
Grass Hills to look at Lower Cretaceous Bow Island/Viking outcrops (this is the day that was rained-out last year)
and return to Chinook that evening. The third day will include stops in the Bear Paw and Little Rocky mountains
on the way back to Billings.

The trip will be limited to 30 participants, so mark your calendar now.
May 8          Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission hearing (application deadline March 26)
               Casper, WY

May 30         Montana BLM competitive lease sale, 9:00 a.m., MT BLM State Office, Billings

June 5         Wyoming BLM competitive lease sale, 8:00 a.m., Holiday Inn Convention Center, Cheyenne

June 12        Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission hearing (application deadline April 30) Casper

June 14        Montana Board of Oil and Gas Commission hearing, Billings Petroleum Club, (application
               deadline May 17)

July 17        Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission hearing (application deadline June 4) Casper

Aug. 2-5       Wyoming Geological Association Field Conference, “The Powder River Basin: From the
               Margins Looking In”, Casper

Aug. 14        Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission hearing (application deadline July 2) Casper

Oct. 6-9       Rocky Mountain Section Meeting, Snowbird, Utah

                    Did you hear that the Clinton administration renamed the San Andreas Fault?
                    It is now called Ronald Reagan’s Fault.

                    O&G InfOrmatIOn
                    fOr the DakOtas
                      & mOntana

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1997 Big Horn Symposium Guidebook -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 50.00
1997 MGS-TRGS Field Conference Guide:
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1996 AAPG Rocky Mountain Section Meeting Expanded Abstracts Volume--------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 25.00
1995 Guidebook: Seventh International Williston Basin Symposium----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 100.00
1993 Guidebook: Energy & Mineral Resources of Central Montana ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 54.00
1991 6th International Williston Basin Symposium ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 55.00
1991 Guidebook: Geology & Horizontal Drilling of the Bakken Formation ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 50.00
1991 Field Trip Guides; Beartooth Mountains ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------7.50
                       Sequence Stratigraphy of the Eagle ss at Billings --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------7.50
1989 Guidebook: Geologic Resources of Montana ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 80.00
1986 Guidebook: Geology of the Beartooth Uplift and Adjacent Basins ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 45.00
1985 Symposium: Montana Oil & Gas Fields ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 55.00
1978 Economic Geology of the Williston Basin -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 100.00
1971 Catalog of Stratigraphic Names ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 10.00
1969 Guidebook: Economic Geology of Montana --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------8.50
1951 BGS 2nd Annual Central Montana Field Conference ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 12.50
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