McKinleyville (formerly, Minorsville) is located 5.25 miles north of Arcata, at an elevation of 141 feet. The population is 15,177. This unincorporated community is the third largest community, after Eureka and Arcata, on the far North Coast and larger than five of seven cities in the county. It is also the location of the Arcata-Eureka Airport, the largest airport in Humboldt County and the region.
McKinleyville’s climate is characterized by mild, rainy winters and cool, mild summers, with an average temperature of 55 degrees. The area experiences coastal influenced fog all year round.
The City has one of Humboldt County’s more popular local trails. The Hammond Trail consists of over 5 miles of hiking, biking and equestrian trails linking Arcata, McKinleyville, and the surrounding areas. Following the historic Hammond Lumber Company railroad grade, the trail begins at the Hammond Bridge – which crosses the Mad River near the Mad River County Park - and extends north to Clam Beach County Park just south of Little River State Beach. There is an overnight campground at Clam Beach County Park.
The Hammond Trail is also a recreation and transportation corridor traveling through rural and suburban areas of Humboldt County and is a part of both the California Coastal Trail (CCT) and the Pacific Coast Bike Route (PCBR).
McKinleyville has a restaurant which brews its own beer, the Six Rivers Brewery. The brewery makes eleven beers which are distributed beyond the town to San Diego and Portland, Oregon. Six Rivers has picked up awards at the 2004 and 2005 Great American Beer Festival.