“camping and RV's near Mendocino”
Van Damme State Park consists of beach and upland on the Mendocino Coast. Of all the park system's units along the Mendocino coast, Van Damme is perhaps the richest in terms of historical resources connected with the redwood lumber industry. Its story is a prime example of the struggles and eventual failures of a small, independent lumber operation. The park is located three miles south of the town of Mendocino on Highway 1. The highway runs through the park separating the campground and the Fern Canyon trail head to the east and the beach and parking lot to the west.
If you are driving towards Mendocino, California or you are just passing by, then you should know that the Van Damme State Park is a great place to visit especially if you are into strange natural places.
The odd thing about this Park is its Pygmy tree forest where you can stare some really small trees ranging from six inches to eight feet tall. This is a natural outcome due to the peculiarity of the soil and its geographical position. There are about 10 miles of trail that will get you around the park, which can prove to be a great opportunity to relax from a long-hour trip as it was the case with us. Luckily we had our mountain bikes packed at the back of our RV and we wondered around the park for about 2 hours, which proved to be a great fun for us, especially for our sons!
To get there take the turn off to the Mendocino airport and pass it. There is a well marked sign to the pygmy forest on the left. There is plenty of parking, and NO ENTRANCE FEES!!! There are also informative signs along the trail.
We were a little disappointed with our campsite. It was small and covered in fine powder dirt. The bathrooms were not clean. However, the park ranger was a delight and very helpful. I might have to think twice about staying here again, maybe if the site was larger.
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Van Damme State Park
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