Here’s the 12th day of the 12 Rigs of Christmas! You’ll see rigs of companies still here, and others that have come and gone. Some have changed names and colours. People have come and gone. But you know what? Our industry is still keeping our trucks fueled and our people warm. Please share these posts – you might be in them, or recognize others who are.

This is Panther Drilling Rig 4. As with several other drilling companies, I was able to go out and photograph it on its first hole. That was for Caprice Resources about 12 miles north of Estevan, just west of Highway 47. It was generally cloudy and muddy, but I was able to catch some blue sky. I was coming back from Stoughton on a generally cloudy day when it opened up blue for a while, but I could see dark clouds on the eastern horizon coming towards where the rig was. I raced to the lease, parked my SUV and ran up the berm with my heavy tripod and two cameras. Huffing and puffing, I took a pile of high dynamic range shots, using five or even seven exposures to make one photo, by blending them with special software for the purpose. You know how, when you walk out of a mall on a bright, snowy day, your eyes need to adjust? Cameras are like that. They can’t handle very bright and very dark in the same image. the HDR technique deals with that.

That shot, which Panther has since used as their signature picture for most of their promotions, is among one of my very best.

I used to run around the perimeter of leases, usually on the berm, to get shots like this at sunrise and sunset. I’ve found now that I can get the same shot, or even much better ones, by using my drone. I can also do it a lot quicker, from a variety of altitudes and angles. You see that in the gallery at the end. It also reduces my chances of a second heart attack.

Here’s a time lapse video from 2012:

 

Some of these shots found their way into some massive 8-foot wide canvases, as seen here:

 

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    0076 Latus only
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    0073 SaskWorks-Pipeline Online
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    0067 PFM SaskWorks Payroll Investment Plan
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    0064 Estevan OTS
  • 0063 Turnbull Excavating hiring crusher
    0063 Turnbull Excavating hiring crusher
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    0062 TED_EPAC_Technology_30
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    0061 SIMSA 2024 For Sask Buy Sask
  • 0058 Royal Helium Steveville opens anonymous rocket
    0058 Royal Helium Steveville opens anonymous rocket
  • 0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
    0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
  • 0052 Predator Inspections
    0052 Predator Inspections
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    0051 JML Hiring Pumpjack assembly
  • 0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
    0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
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    0046 City of Estevan This is Estevan
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    0041 DEEP Since 2018 now we are going to build
  • 0032 IWS Summer hiring rock trailer music
  • 0022 Grimes winter hiring
  • 0021 OSY Rentals S8 Promo
  • 0018 IWS Hiring Royal Summer
  • 0013 Panther Drilling PO ad 03 top drive rigs
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    0002 gilliss casing services
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    9002 Pipeline Online 30 sec EBEX
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And here we are, nine years later, with Rig 4 drilling for helium at Climax this summer:


And here’s Panther Rig 4, drilling a helium well near Ogema this fall:

That wraps up the 12 Rigs of Christmas. I hope you enjoyed it all. Maybe next year I’ll do service rigs?

One note: It was only on day 10 did it dawn on me that the song actually says, “my true love gave to me,” not “my missus.” Now, why would I use “missus?” well, check out old Metro singing the 11 Days of Christmas. I’ve sung this version a hundred times more often than the original. I guess that’s what happens when you grow up in Yorkton. :

Merry Christmas from me, Brian Zinchuk, and all of Pipeline Online’s columnists. Let’s hope for $100 oil next year. Hell, we’ll even settle for $85!

God bless us, everyone.

  • 0076 Latus only
    0076 Latus only
  • 0073 SaskWorks-Pipeline Online
    0073 SaskWorks-Pipeline Online
  • 0067 PFM SaskWorks Payroll Investment Plan
    0067 PFM SaskWorks Payroll Investment Plan
  • 0064 Estevan OTS
    0064 Estevan OTS
  • 0063 Turnbull Excavating hiring crusher
    0063 Turnbull Excavating hiring crusher
  • 0062 TED_EPAC_Technology_30
    0062 TED_EPAC_Technology_30
  • 0061 SIMSA 2024 For Sask Buy Sask
    0061 SIMSA 2024 For Sask Buy Sask
  • 0058 Royal Helium Steveville opens anonymous rocket
    0058 Royal Helium Steveville opens anonymous rocket
  • 0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
    0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
  • 0052 Predator Inspections
    0052 Predator Inspections
  • 0051 JML Hiring Pumpjack assembly
    0051 JML Hiring Pumpjack assembly
  • 0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
    0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
  • 0046 City of Estevan This is Estevan
    0046 City of Estevan This is Estevan
  • 0041 DEEP Since 2018 now we are going to build
    0041 DEEP Since 2018 now we are going to build
  • 0032 IWS Summer hiring rock trailer music
  • 0022 Grimes winter hiring
  • 0021 OSY Rentals S8 Promo
  • 0018 IWS Hiring Royal Summer
  • 0013 Panther Drilling PO ad 03 top drive rigs
  • 0011
  • 0006 JK Junior
  • 0002 gilliss casing services
    0002 gilliss casing services
  • 9002 Pipeline Online 30 sec EBEX
    9002 Pipeline Online 30 sec EBEX
  • 9001