The second success, the High Island 55L #4 well, is located approximately 65 miles east-southeast of Houston in 45 feet of water. The well was drilled directionally to a total vertical depth of 8,077 feet (8,851 feet measured depth) and encountered a total of 58 feet of apparent natural gas pay in two intervals. EPL owns a 35% working interest in the well, while Vintage Petroleum, the operator, owns a 65% working interest. After the well has been cased and suspended, the operator plans to drill the second of a three-well program on the block. The #4 well will be tied back to an existing platform, and initial production is expected in the first half of 2004.
The third success, known as the Mesa Verde East prospect, is located in 8 feet of water in EPL's East Bay field. This field is situated approximately 80 miles southeast of New Orleans at the mouth of the Mississippi River. The well was drilled as a straight hole to a total vertical depth of 13,900 feet and encountered a total of 37 feet of apparent natural gas pay in two intervals. EPL is the operator and holds a 67% working interest in the well. Newfield Exploration owns the remaining working interest of 33%. Initial production is expected by the first quarter of 2004. EPL has plans for a number of additional exploratory wells in the Mesa Verde area in 2004.
Richard A. Bachmann, Chairman, President, and CEO, commented, "These last three discoveries brings us to 13 successes of 15 total exploratory wells drilled in 2003. We currently have an additional 7 exploratory wells in progress and plan to spud two more before the end of the year. We are very pleased with the excellent job our operating and technical team are doing in executing our very aggressive fourth quarter drilling program."
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