Although Montana still has some of the lowest gas prices in the country, fuel prices have had a dramatic spike over the past week, April 14 - 21.

"Across Montana prices have gone up a pretty big amount, close to seven cents a gallon," said Gasbuddy.com Petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan. [The statewide average] currently stands at about $3.34 a gallon. Some of the lowest prices in the state are in Bozeman $3.17, and Billings $3.19. Prices in Montana have gone up in the last week faster than the national average."

Prices in Missoula were between $3.30 and $3.38 a gallon. The trend in climbing prices is unlikely to end soon.

There are likely more increases as we continue to talk about refinery maintenance, which tightens supply and the switchover to cleaner burning summer gasoline. Last year, prices in Montana really started ramping up into early and mid-May they were at about $3.34 at the beginning of May and then closed the month of May at about $3.65 before climbing in August to $3.71."

Montana’s prices are about 30 cents cheaper than the national average and are nearly identical to the price at the pump last April.