Posts Tagged ‘Memorial Day’

More Americans will take to the roads over the Memorial Day weekend this year as they benefit from a recent drop in pump prices, travel group AAA forecast, heralding a summer of strong gasoline demand.

About 30.7 million people will drive to destinations 50 miles or more away from home between May 24 and 28, the start of the peak driving season in the United States.

Last year, only 30.3 million people drove to their destinations during the holiday weekend, which serves as an early gauge of summer gasoline sales at pumping stations.

“The overall domestic economic picture continues to improve slightly,” Robert L. Darbelnet, AAA president and CEO, said in a statement.

Motorists, however, took a hit from high gasoline prices this spring and will try to save money by staying close to home and cutting entertainment costs, he added.Gas Pump Fill-up

U.S. gasoline prices were averaging $3.73 a gallon last week, compared with $3.96 a year ago.

The forecast indicates motorists may be in a better position to weather higher prices. Fears that gasoline would hit a record $5 a gallon, fueled by the rising cost of oil early in 2012, have abated but prices are higher than in 2008, when Memorial Day travel fell more than 10 percent due to soaring costs.

The forecast, based on a survey of 50,000 U.S. households, found that more than half of its respondents did not change their travel plans because of high gasoline prices.

The government has projected that U.S. summer gasoline prices will average $3.79 a gallon, 8 cents more than last year but significantly lower than the $4 danger zone beyond which, analysts say, demand will drop significantly.

Near-record snowpack in Glacier National Park is delaying the opening of eastside campgrounds one to two weeks past Memorial Day, park officials announced this week.

The delays in the campground openings were announced to inform visitors that winter remains in Glacier even if the calendar says it’s May.

Many Glacier, Cut Bank and Two Medicine campgrounds are tentatively scheduled to open June 10, while Rising Sun campground is set to open June 3. The campgrounds typically open Memorial Day weekend. Memorial Day is May 30. “That’s all really going to depend on weather,” said a park official.

A storm on Friday dropped 12 to 18 inches of snow at higher elevations in the park.

The opening of Swift Current Motor Inn also will be delayed from June 3 to June 10.

St. Mary Campground is open year round.

Many Glacier Road, which can be clear as soon as the third Saturday in April in some years, remains closed to the public. The drifts on that road are so large on some stretches that it’s similar to driving through a tunnel, Blickhan said.

Many Glacier Hotel is scheduled to open on time, on June 17.

Campgrounds on the west side of the park will open on time, Blickhan said.

Winter lingering into May and even June isn’t uncommon in the high country of Glacier Park, but this year stands out for the depth of snowpack and even the amount of snow at lower elevations.
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Planning to head to Kentucky Lake or Lake Barkley for Memorial Day fun or vacations?  Managers around the lake say it’s best to call first.  Dozens of season campers have already been moved from their regular sites.

“I’ve seen it before but not this deep,” said Benny Mitchell of Benton, KY. He is a regular at Hillman Ferry Campground.

Still hundreds of sites are dry, so there’s still hope for a fun weekend.  They just advise making a call to your regular campground first.

Meanwhile, FEMA and Kentucky Emergency Management officials say assessment teams are in Kentucky and should be in Western Kentucky as soon as possible.

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