Gas prices, which have risen like the profile of Mount Rainier since Christmas, hit a plateau in the South Sound this week.
The average price of a gallon of gas Friday hit $3.857 a gallon in the Tacoma area, less than a cent more than at the same time last week.
Nationwide, the average gas price fell by more than four cents a gallon during that same week to $3.679 a gallon.
Though prices here are up more than 55 cents a gallon from Decembers lows, the average here is well short of the $3.993 a gallon unleaded regular was selling for last year in the first week of March.
Energy analysts are predicting that gas prices may moderate further this spring unless some crisis in the Mideast disrupts supplies.
Four stations in the Tacoma area, Costcos in Tacoma and Gig Harbor, an Arco at South 56th and Orchard streets and the CFN station at Portand and Puyallup avenues near I-5, tied for the lowest priced product in the area, $3.69 a gallon, according to The News Tribunes Gas Deal Finder.
In Thurston County, the lowest priced gas was being sold at an Arco station at 7291 Martin Way E. The price there was $3.73 a gallon.
If youre looking for truly bargain-priced gas, go to Wyoming. The average price there was $3.255 a gallon Friday. In Hawaii, the state with the highest prices, a gallon was $4.387 on average.