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Outcrop-Derived Stratigraphy, Structure, and Characterization of an Unusual Woodford Stratigraphic Section, Arbuckle Mountains, Oklahoma


Recent development of the Woodford Shale in Oklahoma has contributed to the domestic and global unconventional resource knowledgebase, furthering the oil and gas industry's understanding of how shale plays produce oil and gas. However, much work is still needed to fully understand the complexities associated with Woodford shale reservoirs, including: facies assemblages, detailed stratigraphy at the local and regional scales as it applies to paleotopography beneath the Woodford, lateral continuity, and contrasts in mechanical competency that can facilitate fracking and/or structural deformation. The aforementioned issues in Woodford characterization are issues that are being addressed by studying an outcrop of the Woodford Shale in the Arbuckle Mountains, Oklahoma which contains a complete Woodford stratigraphic section with associated bounding unconformities at the top Hunton Limestone and base Sycamore Limestone. This outcrop is unusual in that the upper Woodford is highly deformed and repeated above a significant intraformational fault. Also, the unconformity at the top of the Woodford is a well-developed paleosol not previously documented in other outcrops. Measurement of bed thicknesses, coupled with an outcrop gamma ray log, reveal a repetitive set of thickening-upward parasequences. Structural interpretation is focused on relations to regional tectonics of the Arbuckle Mountains. Stratigraphy is being correlated with outcrops at the nearby Hunton Anticline Quarry.