I was there with a camera crew in August 2007. As it turns out just in time before everything closed down. The Chinese started to feel the tension already back then, and it was only because I am extremely stubborn that we got to go so many places that we ended up doing.
Due to varying internet connection our blog from the trip is shorter than planned, but you can check it out here at Geodetic Journey if you like. We traveled with both Chinese and Tibetans and we felt warmly welcome everywhere.