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Deep Potential of Hugoton--Evaluation of Unexplored and Underexplored Areas

David Woltz

Structurally, the Hugoton embayment is a large, southward-plunging syncline that represents a northerly extension of the Anadarko basin. It is bounded on the east by the Pratt anticline, on the northeast by the Central Kansas uplift, on the northwest by the Las Animas arch, on the west by the Sierra Grande uplift, and on the southwest by the Amarillo uplift. The embayment is approximately 150 mi wide and 250 mi long. Subsidence began during the Early Ordovician and reached a maximum from the middle Mississippian through the early middle Permian. Rocks of Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic ages are present in the embayment. The section thickens toward the axis of the embayment where it is about 9,500 ft. The Ordovician through Cambrian section attains a thickness of about 6 0 ft. The Devonian and Silurian are largely absent from the area. The Mississippian and Pennsylvanian sections are about 3,000 ft thick. Excluding the Permian, the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian contain the highest exploration potential. An evaluation of the deeper zones in the underexplored areas of the embayment identified several structural and stratigraphic trends that are presently untested or remain underexplored. The trends can be separated into those controlled by early structural developments which persisted through the section and later structural stratigraphic events. The probability of finding new fields in the 500,000 to 5,000,000-bbl range is good.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91043©1986 AAPG Annual Convention, Atlanta, Georgia, June 15-18, 1986.