★★★★★ based on 48 reviews Overall rating:
These reviews are from just some of the wonderful people who have sailed with me on Mahalo through the years as well as having had lessons with me. The feedback I get from students, guests, friends, good or bad, is an integral part of how I adjust my approach and teaching style to each individual to ensure an excellent experience for anyone sailing with me.
Please scroll down to submit a review of your own and thank you very much!
I highly recommend this instructor.
“Stephen's enthusiasm for sailing and his decades of experience made the training super informative and fun. He does a great job of simplifying the basics and adding complexity as a student progresses, and he has the uncanny ability to let us make mistakes and learn from our experiences while keeping us safe and the boat controlled. I highly recommend this instructor.”
- Aslinn A
a Wonderful Week in Guadeloupe
“My girlfriend and I spent a week with Stephen sailing Cumbava in Guadeloupe. We had some sailing experience and were looking at improving our skills on our way towards chartering boats on our own. We got so much more! Stephen was a great teacher, made sailing such a large boat so easy and safe. Stephen knows how to teach in a way to build confidence and focusing on the important aspects of boat handling. On top of that, Stephen made the week an incredible vacation. Stephen's knowledge of Guadeloupe and all the hidden places really made this trip an incredible experience. It was a great pleasure to explore islands and paradise-like places with him. To answer Stephen's motto: "yes it was fun! and we would definitely do it again!"”
- Mathieu & Ellen
Great French Caribbean Sailing
“Very pragmatic approach to teaching with ample opportunities to jump in and learn/do the many functions related to sailing and boating. Excellent tutoring on boat handling and catamaran sail trim. Activities focused on self-assessment and working on items that need the most attention.”
- Charles Gray
True Seamanship Sailing Guadeloupe
“Stephen's depth of maritime experience is reflected in his approach to sharing knowledge about boat handling, crewing, navigation, reading weather, and the art of sailing. It's all about experience... and for us, it was excellent! Though our crew boarded the Cumbava (a Helia 44 catamaran) with different skill levels, we all ended our week so much more knowledgeable and confident. It was challenging and fun, with a good taste of what cruising in the French Carribean aboard a sailboat is all about: good seamanship, camaraderie, tropical islands, exotic culture, food to die for, beaches, snorkeling, keeping your eye on the horizon, etc., etc....”
- Philip & Susan
My son was thrilled!
“Capt. Frankland took us out for three hour sailing lesson and he made it a wonderful experience. We needed help with learning to leave and return to the dock on our boat. Stephen made us feel at ease, was patient, easy going teaching style was perfect. My son was thrilled that he had this opportunity to learn this new skill. We are looking forward to having follow up lessons. I am so grateful we found Agwe Sailing and Stephen for lessons, and coaching.”
- Margaret Brayden
“Stephen is an excellent teacher and has some fascinating stories to share as well! We loved sailing down the Columbia river. Went on the 5pm trip after a day of work in Portland. Great time!”
- Vika Safarian
“Stephen is a wonderful teacher! He is knowledgeable , professional, kind and patient and never makes you feel bad for not knowing something. We are just learning the basics with him and he has already given us so much confidence that we can't wait to learn more!”
- Mackenzie Bruns
Fabulous time :-))
“It was wonderful to be out on the water again....it had been way too long!! Stephen is a delightful, competent, educational captain. My husband steered for quite some time & learned some & remembered some. Stephen is a wealth of knowledge which he easily shares before, during & after the sail. We anticipate our next sailing in about 3 weeks, when we take some friends. :-)) This will be an experience we definitely repeat!!”
First time sailing - loved it!
“My friends and I loved our sailing experience with Stephen! It was interesting and fun. We hope to continue our sailing experiences! Thank you.”
- Alexa Stack
“Rob is wonderful sailing instructor! He was able to give calm, informative instruction and adapt his approach as I gained confidence. He asked me repeatly if pace of instruction was on target. In addition, Rob was able to ensure my wife and 3 year old son were safe and comfortable. I’m looking forward to my next lesson!”
- Sean Slee
Knowledgable sailor and a skilled teacher!
“Stephen isn't just a seasoned and knowledgable sailor. He's also a personable, skilled teacher, and Mahalo is a beautiful boat. You can't do better than this unbeatable combination of man and boat, whether you're out for a sail, or really wanting to add to your learning.”
- Katrina Gould
“Stephen is a natural-born teacher and fantastic sailor, too. My 17-year old son is taking lessons and loving it, so I went out for an evening sail to see what it was like. Fantabulous! Stephen is a calm and through teacher who pays attention to safety without freaking out. He explains what he's doing in easy-to-understand language and makes it clear that I could be as involved as I wanted to be or could just sit and enjoy the ride. Highly recommend the experience!”
- Garth Upshaw
Fun on the water!
“My friends and I had a great session on the water with Capt. Frankland. I dream of one day owning my own boat and I think the Captain will help make it happen.”
- Ben M Goodlad
Fun and Engaging!
“I had the pleasure of sailing with Stephen for a few hours, and there was never a dull moment. Stephen is a really knowledgeable and friendly guy. He’s a patient and constructive teacher with a clear focus on helping you achieve your goals. My time on Mahalo went by all too quickly! I was soaking up new information the whole time and was shocked at how the time flew by. I would highly recommend sailing with Stephen/ Agwé to any of my friends. Thanks Stephen!”
- Quin Bingham
From amateur sailor to competent captain
“Robert and I want to thank you for the training you provided before our recent charter in the BVI. It was a wonderful trip in part due to the confidence and competence we felt behind the wheel and sails. We reefed daily and felt how great it was to be in strong winds and have the vessel responding well and continue sailing efficiently. The afternoon we spent with you was pivotal in turning us from being amateur sailors to becoming competent captains on a vessel.”
To the Sea!
“Sailing is movement in harmony with nature's most powerful forces. Fun is the goal. Safety and confidence unite these two. Stephen's experienced and kind guidance introduced me to a lifetime of continued learning that has opened access to the world's only truly free highway, the sea.”
French Caribbean awaits you!
“I started my sailing lessons in Oregon and continued them in the dreamy French Caribbean isles of Guadeloupe. I couldn’t ask for a better introduction to sailing that has now developed into a full fledged addiction! Thank you for everything, Stephen!”
“It had been a few years since we went sailing and Stephen provided us with a lovely evening pleasure sail on the Columbia. It was great to feel the boat moving us across the water again and to get a sailing refresher . Great sailing, and wonderful conversation; we highly recommend and are looking forward to scheduling lesson time with captain Stephen aboard Mahalo!”
- Warren and Natalie
We enjoyed our time aboard Mahalo!
“My husband and I had a great time sailing with Stephen. We had a sunset sail with perfect wind. We couldn't have asked for a better experience, it was very relaxing and enjoyable! Stephen is knowledgeable and he makes sailing look effortless. He brings lots of expertise to the sailing and he is extremely safety-conscientious. Stephen let us be as involved as we felt comfortable. Also, it was very enjoyable talking with Stephen. I would highly recommend booking sailing with Stephen! Thank you Stephen for such a great time! It was definitely lots of fun and we would like it to do it again! Joanna and Matt Kowalski, Portland.”
- Joanna Kowalska
Want to get your kids off social media?
“Take them sailing with Stephan! My 10 yr old grandson declared it "best day of the summer". This was after he went to Lake Michigan for 2 weeks, Puerto Vallerta for a week, survival camp for a week, hiking, canoeing, kayaking, SU paddleboarding... but while educating him about wind direction , sail trim & constant encouragement, Stephan let him take the helm to "feel it"... and he was hooked! I had asked Stephan, as I have been sailing all my life, to help me get him fascinated with sailing, a legacy I feel compelled to pass along. He gave him the encouragement & confidence to put the lessons to the test & make him comfortable enough to take the helm, all the time sitting next to him for assurance. Thank you Stephan for instilling the desire to continue sailing & learning. He is so hooked on our next cruise... there's no putting the genie back in the bottle now!”
- Kai & Susan
Limited wind but learned much!!
“What a great experience. We chose the early morning and the wind hadn't arrived yet. So, we had a learning experience about sailing and the wind. I had never been sailing so I ate it information up! Then the wind hit and we were off!! What a great time !!”
- Lilian & Jeff
No wind but still a great day!
“We set off for an early morning sail. Unfortunately there was no wind whatsoever. Still had a wonderful time on the water with my family and Stephen. He is a great Captain and it was entertaining spending the morning with him too. Thank you Stephen!”
- Rick Sexton
Best Class Possible
“Stephen was my instructor for the beginner sailing class with ISC. His competence and instruction style really made for a great learning experience. Great job and thank you for a awesome weekend.”
- Fred S.
“Went on my first lesson ever and had a blast. Learned a lot about the basics of sailing and felt myself understand more and more as the lesson went on. Had a lot of fun and would definitely recommend to anyone trying to learn to sail. Stephen was great!”
“We had so much fun sailing with Stephen. We had reserved a sunset sail for the family. The wind was perfect, Stephen's instructions were impeccable and he let us be as involved as we felt comfortable. Stephen is such a master with the boat that he makes solo sailing look effortless, which is quite the feat. And we got to learn a ton, while having great conversation in a gorgeous place. Couldn't have asked for a better experience. Thank you!! If I lived in Portland, I would certainly take classes.”
“My adult son living in England had never been on a sailboat. Stephen regaled us with tales and sailing technique. All new to us and very interesting as well as enriching our 3 hour trip. We learned a lot and my son now wants to go sailing again. He is a valuable source for British history and sailing but now he's hooked. I fear I have created a monster in that he will return to England and want to rebuild the sailing ships of yore. Just so he doesn't go back as far as the vikings. Jim Gangwer”
- JIM GANGWER
“It was a beautiful fall morning and we had a wonderful time with Stephen. The experience he provided us was wonderful, very relaxing and enjoyable. Highly recommended if you ever just want to go out on the river and set sail for a morning, afternoon or evening experience.”
- Christy Timmons
“If you are even thinking of learning to sail, I can't recommend a tour with Stephen on Mahalo high enough (there are not enough stars ;-). All the wonderful things others have written in reviews are true! Thanks so much, Stephen, for an amazing first sail. I'll be back for more!”
- Lisa Lewis
Running with the wind
“My second class with Stephen, I gained a whole new level of sailing skill and proficiency all the while growing my enthusiasm. A great lift in my ability to meet my goal. Always fun safe and professional. He is a great treasure chest of knowledge and wisdom.”
- Rob Roy
Portland Sailing Trip
“Stephen was not only our airbnb host, and a gracious one at that, he also took us on his beautiful boat. We went sailing on the Columbia. I have never sailed before, and Stephen was very informative, while having fun at the same time. We went out in the evening and were able to see some of the racing boats, and learn the etiquette of the waterways. I would go again, and would love to learn to do it myself eventually. I highly recommend.”
- Sarah D
Perfect Introduction to Sailing!
“Capt. Frankland took us out for an introductory sailing lesson and he made it a wonderful experience. His patient, easy going teaching style was perfect and left us wanting more. I would highly recommend using Agwe Sailing for lessons, coaching, or any charter needs.”
- Matt Weaver
“If you're even a little bit curious about sailing, I highly recommend booking a charter with Stephen. My experience was a terrific one. Stephen is knowledgeable and professional, as well as friendly and easy- going. I learned a lot on my first sail, so much so that as soon as I got home, I booked three more.”
- Shawna Myklebust
“Stephen's everything you'd want in an instructor. Approachable, prepared, experienced, and affordable. He's my future go-to for accessing the Columbia via sail or brushing up on sailing skills. Glad he's around!”
“Stephen is a great teacher , always explaining whats going on and making sure everyone on board is comfortable. Cant wait for my next trip on Mahalo”
- Dan Tilson
Sailors in the Making
“Stephen is a total pro! He is totally transparent about all laws, policies, best practices, safety measures, etc. while aboard his beautiful Mahalo. My girls are 4 and 6 and sailing with Stephen was absolutely the highlight of our weekend in Portland. They loved that they learned so much and felt as though they were truly sailing the boat themselves. Stephen has the perfect disposition for teaching. He does it so well. Thank you Stephen!”
“I went sailing for the first time a few weeks ago with Stephen, and it was a fabulous introductory course. I now understand the meaning of what roles a sailer plays while on the water and also the importance of sailing safely. I look forward to my next sailing adventure with Stephen and to learning more about the ways of sailing.”
- Suzanne Peterson
Take your sailing skills to next level
“Stephan brings a wealth of experience and expertise to your sailing experience with him. He’s patient, thorough, and extremely safety-conscientious. If you’re a new sailor, he’ll set you on the right course towards your goal of becoming a solid sailor. If you’re an experienced sailor, he’ll work with you to hone your skills and reinforce best-practices with regards to sailing. It’s definitely worth the money to spend some time with this extremely knowledgeable and well-trained sailor.”
Agwe makes learning FUN!
“I can't recommend a better sailing teacher. Stephan is clear, thorough, and feels into the learning style of the student. This is rare to find in a sailing teacher or any teacher for that matter. He also makes it fun while you learn. He was so great with my 4 year old son when we went out on the boat. My kiddo had a blast! I will post the pics on the FB site. If you want to learn to sail, learn how to do it the right way from Stephan! The combo of meticulous, safety oriented, patience, and fun is unprecedented in the sailing world.”
- Joanna Jech
“The captain was a true teacher and scholar of all things sailing. Im looking to begin my sailing life and he pushed me just that much further into doing it. It was easy to follow his instruction and he was an immensely chill guy with great energy! Take a ride even if its just for some fun”
- Michael Ramos
GREAT Discovery Sail Today on Mahalo!!
“My husband Tom and I did our Discovery Sail with Stephen at Agwe today on Mahalo, and we had a great time! We had the reschedule twice over the past week as the weather just wasn't cooperative (squall-showers and rain last Sunday, and the 24 gusting 37 winds on Friday! Yikes) BUT, today was cool to warm, with some nice soft breezes that were very comfortable for us first-timers. Above all, I have to say that Stephen was knowledgeable, patient, and he was really focused on making sure we had a very positive experience. We look forward to learning more about the "Learn To Sail" program at Island Sailing, and also about the exciting new integration of NauticEd into the training platform.”
- Tom and Martha Sampson
“Capt. Franklins is a patient and enthusiastic instructor that wants to pass on the joy of sailing to his students. While I not gone on the Mahalo yet I took a Skipper course from him at Island Sailing and had a great time.”
- JonAlan Page
Oh what a ride!
“I'm new to sailing and was taught the basics by Capt Frankland (aka Stephen). He's great! His depth of knowledge and experience inspire confidence and excitement. His patience seems limitless. A recent day on his boat, Mahalo, proved particularly exciting with winds to 30 mph. I found myself somewhat tense as gusts heeled the boat to leeward, but Stephen's calm and knowledgeable demeanor allayed any deeper concerns and I was able to thoroughly enjoy the ride. It was an exciting day - one I won't soon forget. Thank you Stephen!”
- Owen Sutton
Most Excellent Adventures
“On Mahalo one does not just float but rises above life's normalcy. She is not just a boat but an experience to remember. Often the best music is not in the her rigging but below as she has seen many a night with accomplished musicians serenading nature as the gentle night falls.”
- Alan Somervell
“I have sailed on Mahalo many times. With Stephen as captain, it's an amazing experience. He is always kindly teaching and sharing his knowledge of sailing as he gets you involved. Mahalo is a classic boat that's kept in tip top shape. Stephen uses every off season to upgrade and maintain her to his meticulous standards. He's an amazing person and sailor. I highly recommend the experience.”
- Todd Nicodemus
“Stephen is an expert sailor, great teacher and all around decent guy, Beginners to experts can learn something from his long experience in all kinds of water. Mahalo is his baby and very shipshape, safe and a great boat to learn on. Sailing is a great way to get away from it all and Stephen is the perfect tour guide, book now!”
- Dan Peterson
“Captain Frankland is a great teacher and host! A safe, fun and comfortable environment seem to be his top priorities. His calm and super informative style of teaching had me hands-on sailing in no time. He's also great with small groups knows how to keep everyone involved an having fun! I'm always looking forward to the next class or relaxing sail and highly recommend booking yours today!”
- Steve Moore
“I've always considered myself a slow learner, but with Captain Frankland with his calm demeanor, patience, knowledge and fun nature, he made learning to sail easy to understand -even the details. Highly recommended!”
- Clayton Gese
Clear Instruction, Easy To Learn!
“I have enjoyed sailing on Mahalo! Stephen's first priority is safety. He gives clear and concise instruction, which makes lessons easy to remember and apply what I have learned. What I have learned compliments the increasing joy I experience each time I sail. Thank you Captain Franklin! It's truly a pleasure!”
- Lorna Baxter
“The only source of knowledge is experience.”