Women's Religious Hike Nearly Turns Tragic

Eight women had to be rescued in extreme heat from Camelback Mountain in Arizona
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2022 8:09 AM CDT
Women's Religious Hike Nearly Turns Tragic
Camelback Mountain in Arizona is not a place for novice hikers in extreme heat.   (Getty/BCFC)

(Newser) – The idea behind their hike was to test themselves physically and spiritually, and it ended up being off the charts on both counts. Eight women had to be rescued from Arizona's Camelback Mountain this week amid triple-digit temperatures. All suffered what were described as "heat-related illnesses" but survived, though three had to be hospitalized, per the Washington Post. The women were out-of-towners from Alabama, Tennessee, and California who get together annually for a retreat, and they say they were filming this one for a reality show called Bad Girls Gone God, in which women "embark on strenuous activities to get closer to God," reports Fox10 Phoenix.

"We were not prepared," Tatiana Robinson, who had to be airlifted off the mountain, tells ABC15. "We didn't even get that much sleep." The group of about 15 set out on the challenging Echo Canyon Trail about 7am, and temperatures rose from about 90 to 107 by noon. The group made it to the top of the mountain, but members began to struggle on the way down. It's not a huge surprise: The Post takes note of a local Facebook group related to the mountain with a telling name: "Please Don’t Die Or Have to Be Rescued On Camelback Mountain, Arizona.”

Phoenix Fire Department officials say some of the rescued women had brought along only a small bottle of water, a serious mistake for such a hot day on a tough trail. Some of the rescued women were able to be guided down the mountain, while others had to be wheeled down, as seen here. As for the spiritual component of the day, Robinson is unfazed. "God was definitely with us," she says. (Read more hiking stories.)

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