A mom and her three kids had to survive a night in the desert after getting stranded on a desolate dirt road north of the Valley Monday night.
Monday afternoon Alyssa Carrillo loaded up her sister and three kids under five for the scenic drive up to Seven Springs — an isolated recreation area about 10 miles north of Cave Creek. Instead, they ended up stranded when their car broke down.
"I bottomed out in my car, I hit my oil pan. All the fluids drained and I realized I wasn't going to get out of there," Carrillo said.
That was mid-afternoon and by 9 p.m. Alyssa knew they were in trouble.
"There were multiple helicopters coming through but none of them spotted us, even with my doing S.O.S. with my lights,” she explained.
With darkness and cold setting in, Alyssa ran the heater sparingly until the car died completely at 1 a.m.
Blankets Alyssa keeps in the car got them to morning. But they had very little food and only a single sports drink between five people.
They walked two miles until Alyssa's sister had service to her cell phone and they called for help.
"So much relief; so much relief when we saw the helicopter," Carrillo explained.
Phoenix police and the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office made the rescue.
Alyssa said she learned a hard lesson.
"I have to make better choices when it comes to going out; especially going out with my kids."