After The Dragon's Tail awakening, we decided to stick to trails made and maintained by the National Park Service, not mountain goats. We decided on the Highline Trail, which starts at the Logan Pass visitors center, and continues for 12 miles to a shuttle pickup further down the pass.
And also..... there was something we could summit! It wasn't a mountain, but it was a butte!
Even the climb to Haystack Butte was challenging, even though it was listed as "family friendly" in our summit book. But once we got up to the top we were rewarded by 360 views that gave us a different perspective of the park around us.
Descending back to the Highline Trail was also challenging, and I finally started feeling the inadequacies of my shoes. We had hiked about 55 miles in cycling shoes and crocs at this point, and believe it or not neither footwear was designed for angular descents or steep climbs. But we still had about 12 miles to go AND this was our last Glacier hike. We had to make the most of it.
By the time we reached the Grinnell Glacier overlook, we only had a few hours to make it down to the shuttle stop and 5 more miles to hike. The trail up to the overlook ascended diagonally up the cliffside with no switchback. Straight shot up to the top of a ridge. Life was really hard at that moment but I really wanted to see the glacier from the higher perspective. It was WORTH IT.
From there was basically ran down the mountain, actually jogging as certain points. Something was happening to my feet that I had never experienced. My second toe on my right foot was tingling in pain every I put pressure on it, and it kind of felt like the bones in the top of my feet were splitting apart. I also had blisters on the balls of my feet and the pads of my toes. On top of that, we were descending 1500 feet into hot valley air, walking through a burned out forest (ie no shade). We were running out of water. We had 45 minutes till the last shuttle would leave and strand us on the mountain. It was difficult.
But we made it in time! We survived Glacier with inappropriate equipment! Success.