The western edge of the Portero Hill district features an outdoor park called McKinley Square. Well-kept lawns, a playground, amazing views of the city, and a community garden make this park a popular daytime attraction for families. For dog lovers, the four-acre open space is also one of the city’s most popular off-leash dog play areas! Dog lovers often frequent this park because there is plenty of space to run and water fountains at nose level that dogs can drink from.
The park is built on top of a hill with a long, winding pathway descending from the park’s main play area to the picnic area below. Well-placed trees provide a long wall of shade that protects a majority of the park’s upper and lower areas. There are benches along the winding trail where you can sit and rest, but no restrooms offered by the park. The park is protected from the part of US-101 that runs below the park to the southwest, but if there is a lot of traffic, you might hear some of the sounds coming up from the freeway.
McKinley Square is a public park where you and your dog can come and play off-leash. Dogs must be on a leash in and around the playground where children are playing, but dogs are free to roam the rest of the park off-leash. Poop bags are not provided by the park, so you will have to bring your own in order to make sure that you are able to keep the park clean for others to use. Some areas of the trail can be steep, so be careful if you and your dog go exploring off the beaten path.
Many people appreciate the park for several different reasons, but all seem to agree that the park has one of the best views of the city of any other park in the area. Visit with your dog during a sunset or afternoon and you will be rewarded with a spectacular view to go along with your fun, off-leash playtime.