Shane McConkey was a professional skier and base jumper. He was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, and was based in Squaw Valley, California. He started as a competitive ski racer, but moved on to be featured in a long line of extreme skiing movies. McConkey was known for combining BASE jumping with skiing, as seen in such feats as skiing into a BASE jump off the Eiger.
On March 26, 2009, Shane McConkey died while skiing in the Dolomite Mountains in Italy. After performing a double back flip, McConkey intended to glide away in his wingsuit. But he struggled to release his skis. By the time he got them off, he had been free-falling for 12 seconds and was too close to the ground for his wingsuit or parachute to do him any good. His parachute did not malfunction; it was never deployed.