Informalex ::
The Association of Canadian Mountain Guides'
Information Exchange

Mountain Conditions Report (MCR)

Launched in 2005, the MCR is a public service offered by the ACMG that provides current mountain conditions information on a sporadic, volunteer basis by professional guides and instructors. Any member of the public is free to view the archives and/or subscribe. Because it is in the public realm, posting guidelines are necessarily tighter than those for the Informalex.

As of February 2017 the MCR had over 3500 subscribers. Since Arcteryx took over the Mountain Conditions Report in 2017 the email functionality of the MCR was stopped in favour of an app- and web-based platform. The pre-existing mailing list still receives updates as a "grandfathered" service but is no longer available to new subscribers.

Informalex: The World's Biggest Guides' Meeting

The Informalex is a private, professional guide and instructor mailing list that is designed for the exchange of information and stimulation of dialogue on conditions, routes, and other relevant professional issues among ACMG and IFMGA members.

As it is only viewed by members of these associations, or others with a specified need that have been approved by the MCR/Informalex Committee, there are fewer guidelines than the MCR. From 2004-Nov 2009 it was divided into two geographic areas: "Coast" and "Rockies/Interior", but as of Nov 2009 it was merged again into a single "Informalex" list. This was as a result of the fact that most conditions reports are now made directly to the MCR, and the Informalex is now used mainly as a guides' general information exchange.

Subscription is available to all ACMG and IFMGA members, or others at the discretion of the MCR/Informalex Committee. As of August 2007 there are about 300 subscribers to the Informalex.

Taking part in the Informalex & MCR

Please see the Informalex Info & FAQ page for details on how to participate.

A Brief History

In 1994 mountin guide Cyril Shokoples started the Rescue Dynamics Current Conditions page, which at the time was probably the first and only mountain conditions source available on the world wide web.

The Informalex was started by Mark Klassen and Grant Statham in 1998 as a super low-tech solution to guides exchanging information: a carbon copy email list that soon grew to unwieldy proportions.

In 2003, Tom Wolfe took over and injected a little technology into the project: the Informalex gained its owndomain name and became powered by Mailman mailing list software which greatly eased the efficient and reliable transfer of information amongst guides as well as provided an archive available online.

In July 2005 the Mountain Conditions Report (MCR) grew as an extension of the Informalex, freely available to the public. This was in direct response to several local climbing accidents that we felt might have been avoided if the climbers involved could have had access to what were then private Informalex discussions.

In October 2005 a group of ACMG members met to decide the fate of the Informalex, and in June 2006 ownership and control passed on to the ACMG. The Informalex is now officially coordinated by the ACMG's "MCR Committee," which is composed of volunteer members of the ACMG.

In June 2007 we finally got around to working on the look and usability of the MCR interface. All MCRs from the very first post by Marc Piché about the Little Sister are now nicely indexed and searchable! We hope the better product serves you well.

Update: The Mountain Conditions Report was taken over in 2017 by Arcteryx, who now hosts the resource on their webiste

Questions, concerns, suggestions: send an email to Tom Wolfe, Informalex moderator, or visit his Contact Form

Informalex Admin | MCR Admin

Major Facelift June 29, 2007 - Last update Sept 27, 2018

Questions? Contact the Moderator