My dad and I took a road trip through California and Nevada over Christmas break and noticed something odd in our travels.
We stopped at a Chevron station in Tehachapi that had two "sides" with sets of pumps on each. A convenience store separated them.
Nothing unusual with that setup, except that half of the pumps were "Chevron" while the other half said "The Barn" (unbranded gas).
The price for the Chevron gas was about 50 cents higher per gallon. The convenience store was common between the two banks of pumps. Separate signs but a common address (says Google); separate Gasbuddy entries for the two sets of pumps. I'll link StreetView so you all can see (Drive around to the right to see the cheap gas side): Chevron Street View
We saw something similar at a 76 in Fresno. The 76 pumps were more expensive than the "EZ TRIP" pumps which had no "76" branding on them. The cheap prices were posted on a separate sign.
(Which do you think the rental car got?)
The cynic in me wonders if they have two sets of tanks... that'd be six or eight tanks for one station (Chevron 87, Chevron 91, Chevron Diesel, Generic 87, Generic 91, Generic Diesel, plus Chevron and Generic 89 if those aren't blended from the regular and premium). It's also sixteen different prices including cash and credit prices! It seems like an awful lot of work and hassle to me. Or are they selling Chevron as generic, or generic as Chevron? This made me curious, as I've seen nothing like that at hundreds of gas stations all over the country... Does anyone have any ideas or knowledge about this setup?
As an aside, highly recommend a trip like this. Death Valley was so much more beautiful than I could've guessed (though being 60 degrees rather than 120 helps a lot, I'm sure.)
(This was a spur of the moment sort of thing... We got $40 plane tickets to Vegas and rented a car, then drove to Death Valley, Yosemite, and Sequoia NPs. Beautiful country! 1200 miles in three days.)