We met a family in Canyonville Oregon on our next to last day on the TAT. This was a father and his two boys that had ridden the TAT and was met at this point by the mom/wife to see them and then collect them from Port Orford and portage them back home. The dad asked us how we'd routed ourselves along the way and we told him sometimes Sam's tracks, sometimes Kevin's and sometimes our own custom route skipping some gratuitous gravel to make time. He proudly said that "Well, we rode every inch of Sam's track and never wavered from it. If you didn't do that, you just just 'rode some roads' instead of the TAT." I can see why someone would be very proud of having done exactly what he said they did and if that's the thing that really adds to your sense of accomplishment, then that's totally cool and I'd acknowledge it as quite a feat. But I'll also say again, if taking 5 weeks to ride the TAT (which is what they did) is a non-starter for you, then I'm pretty happy with our efficient TAT ride and will reiterate again that the journey is the reward and we got the full measure of TAT essence from our ride. I'm still pinching myself to make sure I didn't dream it every time I go back and look at the photos again.