By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Feb. 3 -- US drilling activity hit the highest level in 20 years with 1,513 rotary rigs working this week. That's 26 more than the previous week and up from 1,248 at this time last year, said Baker Hughes Inc.
It's the highest weekly rig count reported since Jan. 31, 1986, when 1,594 rigs were drilling in the US.
Land operations accounted for all of this week's gain, up by 26 units with 1,421 rigs drilling. The number of offshore rigs working in the Gulf of Mexico was down by 1 to 68. However, the number was unchanged at 72 in US waters overall. Inland waters activity was unchanged with 20 rigs working.
Texas had the biggest gain, up 12 rigs to 684 working. Wyoming gained 6 to 95, and New Mexico was up by 4, also to 95 total. Oklahoma increased by 2 to 157. California and Alaska were up by 1 rig each to 33 and 11, respectively. Colorado was unchanged with 86 rigs working. Louisiana had the only decline among the major producing statesdown by 3 to 168.
Canada's rig count increased by 29 to 747 units making hole. That's up significantly from 576 a year ago.