Van Damme State Park is a state park of California, United States. It is located in the Sierra Nevada mountain range and preserves part of the historic trail used by Native Americans to cross the mountains, known as the Great Basin Trail. The park was named after Charles F. Van Damme, who blazed many miles of trails in the region during his time working for the U.S. Forest Service. Located within the boundaries of Yosemite National Park, the 2,872-acre (1,163ha) park lies between latitudes 39°N and 41°N; its average elevation is 5,400 feet (1,500m). Its main entrance point is at an altitude of about 4,000 feet (1,200m), with additional entrances near Lee Vining, Calaveras Big Trees State Park, and Tuolumne Meadows.
The park has three developed areas: North Meadow Campground, South Meadow Campground, and the Backcountry Center. Between them they contain 66 camping sites equipped with water and electricity, modern restrooms, hot showers, picnic facilities, and other amenities. There are also two group campsites that can accommodate up to 50 people each. In addition there are 7 cabins nestled into the forest which vary in size from one bedroom to 3 bedrooms. Each cabin comes complete with all the necessary furniture and utensils so you have everything you need to make yourself at home. Outside of the cabins are a fire ring and grill area as well as nearby access to hiking trails and a general store/grocery store.
The Backcountry Center contains various educational displays on local plants and wildlife, natural history exhibits, and information kiosks. A full-time naturalist provides free programs throughout the year. On weekends from May through October, costumed “park rangers” enforce park regulations while handing out candy and telling stories to children. Every Labor Day weekend, the park hosts the annual Firefall Festival where amateur performers share their talents with family, friends, and the public.