EnerVest/Geokinetics started seismic exploration of the Utica covering a 28 square mile radius.  I am not sure of the exact boundary but know that part or most of it will be in the northern end of Marlboro.   Iam new to this exploration they will perform  on our land, if you are aware of issues, or have  experience with this type of work, know what they look for, etc  I would greatly appreciate any information you want to share.   

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The testing is planned to cover all of Marlboro Township. They will be drilling holes 30 feet deep app. 250 ft apart to place charges in lines running roughly north-south in lines about a quarter of a mile apart for the shock wave generation. For receivers, they will be placing sensors in east west lines about a quarter of a mile apart to record the shock readings. These receivers are portable boxes with a short spear about 6 inches long that is pushed into the soil to record the readings and then are downloaded into a computer program that will give a 3D rendering of the rock strata. After the testing, they are to fill and plug the drilled holes with bentonite. Concerns for me: 1) damage to drinking water wells from the shock wave changing the mineral content of the water and quantity (by law they must stay away from such "hazards" by 300 feet, but the size/depth and number of charges they are using concerns me), and damage to drainage tiles in the fields (my tiles are mostly clay tile and laid over 60 years ago and are fragile yet functioning and necessary to drain my fields) 3) damage to property in drilling equipment to drill and then fill the holes. There you have my understanding of the seismic testing strategy.

Thanks for the information, the only thing negative I read about this testing was a small number of the charges do not go off - it was an old article so it may be out of date.  

 I queried all Marlboro’s wells via the ODNR db and see that this township has 284 active wells,  Enervest is shown as the operator of 245.    With 86% of the wells they likely have many or most of the oil gas leases so I wonder if there are many free acres left.   If they start drilling do they plan on buying out the few remaining oil gas owners or can they work around them and will they go after remaining free leases?... Since it looks like they have most of the area locked up I guessing they are waiting to see the results of their testing before making any investments/moves?   Anyone know of any results from their testing?      

BICS, as a note, you asked the boundaries of their seismographical mapping and I know the northern boundary is along Pinedale and the eastern boundary follows Duquette mostly (it does include a few acres west of Duquette around Swamp St. The stakes are being put in place now for the north south running charge lines (you can see them running across the fields) so I imagine they should begin drilling soon. Interesting note you make about charges not going off. Certainly I would hope they have sensors at each charge to record if there was a detonation or not, and I wonder if they pull out the primer or cables or just leave them there in the ground? I am looking forward to being there when they drill and detonate, it should be an interesting experience (I sure wish I could the results to see what is under us).

I just finished the book The End of Country; a well written book, McGraw tells the chronological story of how the gas exploration operations impacted the PA landowners and he jumps off into interesting stories of oil and gas history, land man activity and other related matters.  

 It’s interesting to note that the PA Marcellus shale naturally fractures alone the southwest to northeast axis (the direction of the elliptical Crinoids on Engelder’s farm) and the map of the seismic holes go in this same direction, is this done to get a better view of the natural fractures, if yes will they drill all wells perpendicular to intersect the fractures - drilling in a NW to SE direction?

 Freddy thanks again for the info … can you tell me the status of the seismic exploration, any knowledge gained from the activity - I have not had time to stop in to check things out?

The seismic mapping has not begun yet, they are still in the process of laying out the markers (you can see them all over the township, especially in the eastern half and along Rt 44 and other roads as well as through the fields). Judging by their progress, I would expect the drilling and detonations will occur this winter after the crops are off. As a side note, I was told by a Chesapeake petrochemical engineer that they usually do drill the horizontal bores in a NW by SE direction because the fracturing is much greater in the NE by SW direction in the Utica. This is in fact why the well they are drilling near me here at Congress Lake lies in that orientation.

I was using the ODNR Oil Gas map and found the site's technology a bit limited and slow, basically out-of-date... I wanted to see if I could glean some knowledge by displaying the data in a better tool.  So I built a program that converts ODNR raw data to Google Earth views.  I started with a simple view of just the wells grouped by township with red pins showing producing wells and black pins showing non production wells; and pin details showing the well name, API and well status.

 I attached the view file for Marlboro, please try this and let me know if it works, if it does I'll add views for several Ohio counties.  To open the map simply double click the link, it should automatically launch Google Earth and display the view.  (Google Earth program must be installed on your PC, if not installed link to www.GooleEarth.com and click on "Download Google Earth" - it is a simple install).  After looking at this If you think of other views you would like to see let me know.

 I was in Marlboro two weeks ago and saw that the seismic holes were drilled and loaded.  I also noticed some the surrounding leased land did not have test holes - were some land owners able to stop testing on their land? - thought if you were leased you had not say in the matter.   Can someone provide an update regarding current testing status;  provide info on other items of interest in the area.


I have also been reading Seamus McGraw's "The End of Country" and based on the photos from this NYTs article


I think that this might be his land. 41°38'27.12"N 75°58'23.20"W

I have attached a Google Earth map point of it.




Philip, thanks for the reply and links, when I get time I'll do a Google Earth virtual tour of the area. Will be interesting to see the farms and businesses he spoke of in the book.

Just heard on the street, Enervest is getting ready to drill the Utica well in Marlboro. 

BICS, I was by there on Friday (1/13/12) and I see that they are now beginning to level the area and push back the topsoil and create the perimeter berm. It appears that the well will be right up by the road so this well should be very easy to watch as it progresses for those who find such things interesting.

Freddy thanks for the info. 

From what I know about Chesapeake, they are very conservative and only venture on proven grounds.  Since they are in bed with Chesapeake I'd guess they are privy to recent Utica knowledge and are confortable with what they learned. 

Have you heard anything regarding the Congress Lake well, have they fracked yet, performed activity that would indicate they are moving forward?

It will be interesting to see how these wells in the oil zone perform.

If interested attached map shows Marlboro wells.  You can also select and view other Stark townships and surrounding county wells.  Each well pin includes well details, production data and documentation.  Map requires Google Earth Viewer


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