The Niobrara shale formation is situated in northeastern Colorado and parts of adjacent Wyoming, Nebraska, and Kansas. Primarily an oil play, it is in the Denver-Julesburg Basin, which has long been a major oil and gas province. An emerging play, the Niobrara is in its early stages and companies have been busy leasing land for future drilling. It has been compared by some to the Bakken shale formation farther to the north.
Samson Oil & Gas is one of the earliest companies to establish a position in the Niobrara, which some call the “NeoBakken.” Other operators include EOG Resources, Anadarko Petroleum, SM Energy, Noble Energy, Chesapeake Energy, Whiting Petroleum, Quicksilver Resources, MDU Resources, and Bill Barrett Corp. Chesapeake and EOG each have about 400,000 net acres in the Niobrara.