I did the full TAT in '10 or -11 via Sam's route, and the Western TAT recently via the new route. I personally will only use Sam's work as the other has been known to route riders thru private property and as a former land owner that is a real no no, at least on purpose. I also want to give Sam the credit for his hard work, but enough of that. As to the two routes: the "old" TAT was a lot more fun, and challenging, than the new route. The original route has a few places that an average rider will find a bit difficult, but not so much so that it should be avoided. Some good hills, rocks, stream crossings, sand here and there, and areas that are more remote. I really want to do it again. The new route is also fine, but easily rideable on a big bike. My mount for the original route was my WR250R and it was perfect. With a Safari tank there was never a fuel issue. On that trip there was one other rider on a WRR, and the third was newer to the dirt on a DRZ400. All three bikes were just fine, although the DRZ smoked us when the roads turned smooth, but was a bit harder to ride thru the sand, etc. On the new route I used my Husky TE630, and another rider doing his first realy adv ride was on a brand new Honda Africa Twin. No problem. I really enjoyed both rides but the original route thru the WEST was by far the best IMHO. Our group departed TN on June 15 and we took our sweet time on the trip, finishing late July. The high passes had just barely opened when we went across Colorado, and it was really cold in the high country of OR in the mornings. Some of the creeks were still running high too from Spring run-off. I would probably leave later if doing it again, early July. As to the heat, I just don't remember suffering too much even across Nevada, but then I'm from the South where it is warmish from time to time.