Steve Matles | Modern Sailing

Steve Matles


You’ve got to really love sailing when you launch your first boat in the “mud puddles” of Oklahoma reservoirs. It was a 19-foot Flying Scot, a daysailer that followed him from Tulsa, to Galveston, and finally to Lake Tahoe where he turned it in for a 28-foot Lancer, spending many days sailing the High Sierra lake.

At 10, he got the sailing bug as a summer camper on one of the 10,000 lakes of Minnesota. Before moving west, Steve’s log book registered cruises on Lake Superior (from Duluth to the Madeline Islands), the British Virgin Islands, Dry Tortugas, Florida and Galveston Bay.

In 1981 Steve moved to Reno where he began sailing Lake Tahoe. While Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places in the world, it has its sailing challenges. The wind doesn’t blow from any particular direction because of the mountain peaks, and wind speeds vary from 0 to 25 kts within a few minutes. 

Steve began to teach sailing informally when his kids were young, but in 2012 he officially became an ASA instructor, obtaining his Captain’s license shortly thereafter. In 2016 his job as a hospital safety officer brought him to the Bay Area where one of the first things he did was explore opportunities to continue his love of the sport. That’s when he discovered Modern Sailing and it wasn’t long before he took on instructing Basic Keelboat, Basic Coastal Cruising and Coastal Navigation.

As a professional Safety Officer, Steve not only teaches sailing techniques, but emphasizes the need for safety in all aspects of sailing. Steve lives in San Rafael and works for a nearby hospital. He and his wife, Marty, have two grown children and a corgi named “Gus” (who’s not so crazy about sailing).

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  • Sara Jane G.

    I've taken two classes at MSS&C and was very happy with the program. This is also a great club with lots of opportunities for camaraderie and practice on the water. The boats in the fleet are fantastic and kept in tip-top shape. I highly recommend for all sailors and would-be sailors!

  • Danny Collins

    The office staff was very accommodating in meeting my availability.

  • Ray Arceneaux

    The vessel was clean and in fine condition - very nice boat for training, well-equipped.

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