Glenwood Springs boasts state’s highest gas price on Aug. 6 |

Glenwood Springs boasts state’s highest gas price on Aug. 6

John Gardner
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” High gas prices even surprised the American Automobile Association (AAA) this year as Colorado and most of the nation saw record high fuel prices easily surpass $4 per gallon for regular unleaded.

On June 11, AAA reported that for the first time in history, the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded hit $4.05 per gallon. Colorado hit the $4 per gallon average on June 18 for the first time ever. That was something that AAA Colorado spokeswoman Wave Dreher didn’t expect to see this year.

“As we’ve said before, ‘The only thing predictable about gas prices is the unpredictability of gas prices,'” Dreher said. “Our crystal ball didn’t see this one coming.”

Believe it or not, Colorado’s average price per gallon of regular unleaded has remained lower than the national average for much of the year ” until recently. According to AAA’s fuel gauge report, Colorado rose above the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded at $4.05 on July 23, while the national average dropped to $4.04. Colorado’s highest average price was $4.09 this year in July, while the nation’s highest average price per gallon of regular unleaded was $4.11.

However, those average prices would be a welcome sight for those who live in the Roaring Fork Valley and Garfield County. While the state’s average has been less than $4 per gallon since the end of July, Glenwood Springs recorded the highest average price per gallon for regular unleaded for the state on Aug. 6, at $4.36. Vail, which is typically the highest in the state, and Durango came in second and third, respectively, at $4.27 and $4.01 per gallon.

“I don’t think any of us anticipated prices were going to go as high as they did,” Dreher said. “We did anticipate an increase, especially a seasonal one during the summer months, but did we see this coming? Not any more than anyone else did.”

It should be noted that towns with three or fewer fuel stations aren’t included in the AAA average report.

Glenwood’s fuel prices remain $0.02 higher than recorded on July 2, just before the July 4 holiday, when they typically are at their highest point. But they are $0.11 less than the highest average of regular unleaded for the year, which was $4.47 on July 23.

Despite the high fuel prices, AAA hasn’t seen much of a decrease in motorists traveling throughout the state, Dreher said. The Memorial Day and July 4 holidays both saw little change for motorists statewide, according to Dreher, with Colorado seeing a decline of less than 1 percent from 2007.

“Travel numbers for those holidays were similar to years past,” Dreher said.

While the current price per gallon for regular unleaded in Colorado and the nation is less than $4 per gallon, Dreher was unsure if travelers would again see an increase for the upcoming Labor Day holiday in September.

“It would have to have impacts other than Labor Day weekend,” Dreher said. “If there is some tropical weather in the Gulf of Mexico, or a situation in the Middle East, we could see a price increase. But prices wouldn’t go up just because of the holiday weekend.”

Contact John Gardner: 384-9114

Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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