Life on the North Coast is known for its world class rivers, beaches, forests and open spaces, as well as a neighborly culture and vibrant business community. Unfortunately, the lack of a regional trail system to safely and adequately connect all these valuable assets has kept us from fully enjoying and utilizing the bounty around us. 

The Humboldt Trails Council evolved out of the Trails Trust of Humboldt Bay – we expanded our mission and services and we are looking for volunteers and members who can help achieve the strong community vision of a connected network of trails and other related facilities for non-motorized transportation and recreation.

The trail between Arcata and Eureka will be a priority project focus for us!

There are vast numbers of community members who long for what we see in so many other communities across the state and nation:

  1. A multi-use system that covers many miles and connects communities

  1. That provides access to public open space and recreational trail systems that serve hikers, equestrians and cyclists

  1. That helps us get to and from businesses and transit stops and visitor services

  1. That invites folks of all ages and abilities to get outside and get some exercise

  1. That helps our communities be more attractive places for families and businesses

  1. That is a real asset to the community

We’re excited about the collaborative energy of the Trails Council. There are several groups in our region working on trail-related efforts -- bike groups, equestrian groups, trail-specific groups – all with overlapping missions. When we brought them all together and asked ‘what do all of us need’, it was clear that the Humboldt Trails Council was a key component to getting all of us working together more effectively.


The Humboldt Trails Council serves as a unified voice to support development and use  of trails for recreation and transportation throughout Humboldt County.


Earlier this year, over a couple of meetings, we brought together all of the organizations related to trails, cycling, equestrians – you name it – to figure out what their needs, priorities and potential interests working together were. We needed to change the name of the Trails Trust (we were informed we could not continue to use the name “Trust”) so we took that opportunity and a desire to be more inclusive of a variety of trail-related efforts to change the name, the structure and the function of the organization.

From those planning session/meetings with over two dozen stakeholder groups, we established, in a general order of priority, our current mandates:

  1. to help with coordination of these groups’ collective efforts

  2. provide a clearinghouse of support and information

  3. pursue regional trail system development around Humboldt Bay

  4. advocate for preservation and railbanking of the railroad corridor

  5. develop an online information system for all things trails

  6. enhance equestrian opportunities

  7. continue to develop the Trail Stewards & Adopt-a-Trail Programs to help offset the cost of maintaining trails


The Humboldt Trails Council envisions a well-maintained network of accessible community pathways traveled by walkers and riders of all abilities, ages and means in the pursuit of unfettered kinetic joy. We are advocates, educators, and coordinators working to enhance the county’s active transportation and recreation options, community wellbeing, economic vitality, visitor captivation and appreciation of open spaces.


he Humboldt Trails Council started out as “The Trails Trust of Humboldt Bay.” The TTHB was formed in July 2004 to continue the momentum of the City of Eureka Trails Committee, for the purpose of both advocating and educating the community about potential projects for particularly multi-use trail development and to raise necessary funds for the planning and permitting stages. The goal was to partner with government, business and existing non-profits to pursue regional multi-use trail connection from Table Bluff to the Hammond Trail in McKinleyville. The desire was to help our community discover, learn about and enjoy the unique attributes of the region, particularly around Humboldt Bay and at the same time generate public support for these projects.

Over the next six years, some of the more significant steps taken by the TTHB include:

  1. Established itself first as a fund of the Humboldt Area Foundation;

  2. Developed a diverse base of membership to show support for a regional trail system;

  3. Advocated for development of the Elk River Trail in south Eureka (now going to construction);

  4. Attended two years of meetings with key agencies and advocacy groups working toward a solution for an Arcata-Eureka trail;

  5. Hired part-time staff to provide logistical support;

  6. Took over the 501c3 non-profit status of the Friends of the Hammond Trail when they decided to cease their existence, and transitioned funds from HAF to a bank;

  7. Conducted public outreach and education about the regional trail vision at numerous public events;  

  8. Held three well-attended ‘Trail Mix’ info/fundraising events, including one to host the visiting Coastal Conservancy Board;

  9. Produced a trail mix for sale at local markets with the help of Eureka Natural Foods and a coffee for sale with the help of Kinetic Coffee Company and KWPT;

  10. Kept members and Facebook ‘fans’ abreast of current trail-related news and issues;

  11. Provided input to a variety of planning processes and collected resolutions of support from a number of decision-making bodies;

  12. Co-hosted the weekly KHUM ‘Happy Trails’ radio show and podcast since October of 2009;

  13. Raised funds to support the bid to include Humboldt as one of 50 communities across the nation to receive a proposed $50M each for active transportation facilities and programs in a proposed Active Community Transportation component of the transportation bill reauthorization; and

  14. Started the Volunteer Trail Stewards program, in partnership with of Friends of the Dunes, to address local governments’ concerns that they cannot afford to maintain additional public facilities such as trails (pilot program currently serving the Hammond Trail and soon to expand to other jurisdictions upon funding of a VTS Manager position).


There are a variety of formal or informal organizations working to develop specific trails or to represent the interests of specific trail or active transportation/recreation user types (mountain biking, equestrian, etc…), however there is no organization looking out for the collective interest in and facilitating collaborative efforts to develop trails for transportation and recreation county-wide.

From experience and through formal and informal interactions with trail interest groups in the Humboldt County area, the Humboldt Trails Council (hereafter referred to as the HTC) identified an across-the-board interest in and support for an organization to become a central hub for all efforts trails-related, and to facilitate better coordination and more efficient utilization of resources under the auspices of an “umbrella”-type organization.

Some of the suggestions for a clearinghouse function included collecting, disseminating, and/or providing technical information; current informational updates; a multi-purpose website; maps; events; a central calendar; and research.


  1. Dave Hayes, President

  2. Natalie Arroyo

  3. Jacob Pounds

  4. Merritt Perry

  5. Tom Phillips

The Humboldt Trails Council is your connection

to people who are connecting trails!

About Us

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trail calendarCalendar.html

Tuesdays at

8:30 am

104.3 & 104.7

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trail stewardsHikshari_Trail_Stewards.html
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Humboldt Trails Council

1385 8th St.

Arcata, CA 95521