OF-03-05 Evaluation of Mineral and Mineral Fuel Potential of Crowley and Otero Counties State Mineral Lands Administered by the Colorado State Land Board


This open-file report for Crowley and Otero Counties includes an introduction to the geology and mineral resources of the county along with an index map of tract locations, maps of oil and gas test wells, and industrial mineral prospects. Maps for coal resources and metallic mineral prospects are not applicable in either county. The main body of the report is an evaluation of each individual tract, which includes text as well as a topographic map and a geologic map. Digital ZIP/PDF download. OF-03-05D

Four general categories of resources are included in this inventory:

  • oil and gas
  • coal
  • metallic minerals
  • industrial minerals and construction materials

Each individual tract evaluation includes:

  • A bar graph which ranks each tract’s resource potential for each of the four mineral categories. An explanation of the categories may be found at the end of this introduction
  • Tract identifier number, county name, and county location map
  • Tract location on a 7-1/2-minute United States Geologic Survey topographic map
  • Tract location on a United States Geologic Survey surface outcrop map
  • Location as to section, township, and range and approximate acreage
  • Overview of tract geology
  • Specific assessment of the resource potential for the four resource categories
  • References used in assessing tract potential

From the Report:

Crowley and Otero Counties are in southeastern Colorado. Otero is on the High Plains and is crossed by the Arkansas River. This evaluation of the mineral and mineral fuel resource potential was conducted for the nearly 64,269 and 130,696 acres of state mineral lands within Crowley and Otero Counties, respectively. It was conducted as part of its long-term evaluation of approximately 4 million acres of state lands administered by the State Land Board. For evaluation purposes, these two counties were divided into 112 individual tracts that range from approximately 40 acres to 18,900 acres.

There are no known producing oil and gas or coal resources in the two counties. Sand and gravel are the only industrial minerals and construction materials that occur in Crowley County. In Otero County, limestone resources are found in several Upper Cretaceous age formations including the Niobrara Formation, the Carlile Shale, and The Greenhorn Limestone. These units outcrop widely throughout the county.