NEWS

Sudbury teen completes coast-to-coast flight

07/20/2012 09:01 EDT | Updated 09/19/2012 05:12 EDT
An Ontario teen has completed an epic flight from the Pacific to the Atlantic coasts, becoming the youngest person to fly an amphibious plane across Canada.

Matthew Gougeon, 16, finished the trek in Halifax on Thursday, saying he was "a little bit relieved because there was a little bit of a crosswind" as he touched down.

The record has not been officially recognized.

The teenager's quest began on July 10 when he departed from his home in Sudbury, Ont., for Tofino, B.C. The trip was broken up into several days, the longest of which included nine hours of flying.

He was flying his father's Cessna 182. which has amphibious floats, allowing it to land on the ground and water.

Matthew said the journey was largely routine with a few exceptions, including avoiding some thunderstorms as he flew over Ontario.

"Other than that, the weather's been great," he said.

Matthew’s flight was also a fundraising effort for the Neil Armstrong Scholarship Fund, which provides flight training for young people.

While his formal flight training began at 13, Gougeon had already logged many hours in the air with his father, who is also an avid flyer.

Gougeon, who currently has a recreational pilot licence, made his first solo flight a little less than two years ago in an aircraft used for military training in the Second World War.

Last summer, he passed his private pilot written test on the first try.

MORE:cbcNews