Point McIntyre, Stefansson Sound

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Point McIntyre, Stefansson Sound

by | Oct 17, 2020

Point McIntyre is a low point of land at the west entrance to Prudhoe Bay, in Stefansson Sound on the Beaufort Sea coast, about 196 miles (316 km) southeast of Utqiaġvik and 120 miles (194 km) west of Kaktovik, Alaska. The point was named by Ernest de Koven Leffingwell for Samuel “Scotty” McIntyre who worked with him for 3 years. During the period from 1906 to 1914, Leffingwell created the first accurate maps for a large part of the Alaskan arctic coastline.

In 1955, an airstrip was built to support the construction and operations of a Defense Early Warning Line radar station about 2 miles  (3.2 km) west of the point. The Point McIntyre airport was used exclusively by the U.S. Air Force until the closure of the radar station in 1963. Largely abandoned thereafter, the runway saw occasional use by aircraft engaged in oil industry exploration and drilling.

In March 1988, the Point McIntyre oil field was discovered by the re-evaluation of all the available drilling log data in the area. Previously drilled wells had been abandoned and interest in the area waned until careful re-mapping identified the hydrocarbon potential. The hydrocarbon reservoir is in early Cretaceous age Kemik sand. The discovery well was tested at a sustained rate exceeding 2500 barrels of oil per day. In 2009, the field had produced over 415 million barrels of oil and was still producing about 800,000 barrels per month from 46 wells. Read more here and here. Explore more of Point McIntyre here:

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