Eight women from a small group in the Phoenix area had to be rescued from their hike after they began suffering from heat-related illness yesterday afternoon.

The group started hiking the Echo Canyon Trail of Camelback Mountain around 7:00am for a retreat. Officials say the group of women varied in age and point of origin, with women from Alabama, Tennessee, and California.

Part of the reason to go on the hike was to get footage for a documentary the group was filming - "Bad Girls Gone God" - where the group goes on strenuous adventures to get closer to God.

"We started doing a women’s retreat every year, where we get together," Jasmin Hunter told Fox 10. "We praise, we worship, and we do different activities not only to test our physical test, but spiritual as well."

The hikers told rescue crews that they did not do enough research before starting their trek. Several of the hikers had to be wheeled back down the trail, with two having to be brought out by helicopter.

In the end, three were hospitalized in stable condition.

"I started getting really, really dizzy, and after a while, I just said ‘no, I can’t do this,’" Tatiana Robinson recounted.

"I barely made it down. I had an episode in the car where I almost passed out. It was a lot," said Kristen Livingston.

Cpt. Evan Gammage with the Phoenix Fire Department was quick to give praise to the technology the department has on hand to assist in these situations.

"Our drone was able to get up quickly, locate different groups who are separated, and let us know if they were stable and give us a visual evaluation," he told Fox 10.

Fox 10 Phoenix
Fox 10 Phoenix

Members of the group say God and Arizona were on their side in the situation.

"God was definitely with us," said Robinson. "We’re thinking if they didn’t call -- I don’t know what would’ve happened, but we wouldn’t have made it, maybe."

The women who were hospitalized were aged 24, 42, and 50.

Temperatures on June 22nd during the hike reached triple digits, and Arizona first responders wanted to remind people to do their research, consider the weather, and drink plenty of water.

Read more at Fox 10

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