"Old oil fields" Top 5 Page for this destination Wyoming Things to Do Tip by kokoryko
Wyoming Things to Do: 159 reviews and 314 photos
If you wander around in the Wind River Basin, you may see a lot of these donkey heads, I mean the oil well pumps, in the backcountry. It is not Texas (Panhandle area, or Galveston), of course, but oil contributes to the wellness of Wyoming since 80 years and is part of the heritage of this state in some way. The nature aggressions of oil production are not that bad in this open range place; few roads are built for access, exploration work is carried out before, there are (quite loose, in fact) environmental rules, and in fact, you have to look carefully in the landscapes to see some of them.
Wyoming produces 140000 barrels per day (The barrel per day is the base unit in oil industry, do not tell about tons, tons per year, cubic meters, etc. . . the American oil industry knows only the barrel); the production was higher in the sixties, up to 250000, which in fact “fed” about 4-5 percent of American oil consumption.
The Lander oil field is one of the most easy to visit (if you are interested), just drive north of Lander for 2 km, then, turn left, and go across a small bridge over the Popo Agie River, there you are; the donkey heads are lowering and rising in a small valley, between red rocks cliffs; the main producing area is about 1500 m (I should write 4500 feet, if I keep on American measurement units!) depth, from Permian (250-290 million years) reservoir rocks. The oil goes to refineries through pipelines which are well hidden and you won’t see many of them.
Why not have a picnic on one of the cliffs, after a short hike, look at the landscape with the oil wells and then return to more “natural” areas. Think about where from comes the gas you are burning in your car and contributing to greenhouse effect!
Other oil fields easily accessible in Wind River basin are Beaver Creek or Winkleman, not far from Lander.
Powder River in the North East Wyoming, Big Horn Basin in the North, Green River in the South, are also important petroleum producing areas.
Directions: Most of you drive cars and travel by plane, so you use this natural product (haha, it is a real natural, dirty, we have to admit, but real natural product), it is as interesting to see these installations as other industrial or social installations.
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