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Hikers continue to brave heat despite recorded dangers

Phoenix fire crews said they've been called to more than three dozen mountain rescues since July.

PHOENIX — On the heels of another hiker's heat-related death, first responders want to stress the importance of safety and help residents and visitors to understand the activities that can be fatal in severe weather conditions. 

The statistics associated with mountain rescues are startling even after parks and recreation leaders tried to slow foot traffic during this summer's triple-digit temperatures.

Phoenix fire crews said they've been called to more than three dozen mountain rescues since the pilot program to close some popular hiking trails on really hot days went into effect in July. 

The danger is real and hikers 12 News spoke to said they've learned plenty of lessons on staying safe.

"We have a ton of water, ton of sunscreen, we don't plan on going far we just wanted to see it since we were in the area," Kacey Keen said. "That it's very hot so really not familiar but you can tell the difference, Florida heat is so sticky but here it's just ungodly hot."

Hikers hope to capture the beauty of Camelback without a beat down from the sun in the Valley. 

"We understand the dangers and we don't want to go hike all the way to the top we really just want to come and see it," Keen added.

And even with park rangers at multiple trailheads including Echo Canyon warning hikers about the heat, plenty of people still take their chances.

"This is the only time we could make it so this is really it," Keen said.

As for best practices, experts remind hikers to know their limits, hydrate, stay on the trails and try to hike with someone at all times.

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