El Dorado County lies on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe. Along the edge of the Great Valley, some grasslands contain vernal pools with a succession of spring-flowering annuals, while the lower foothills have areas of gabbro and serpentine soils which support special endemic plants. The rivers and streams have lush riparian woodlands with a number of different species of shrubs and herbs. To the east of Pollock Pines we enjoy the Eldorado National Forest which offers a wide variety of destinations, from drought-tolerant foothill and montane chaparral, to subalpine above 9000 feet in the Desolation Wilderness, to the shores of the largest alpine lake in North America, Lake Tahoe. Our chapter covers lands west of Echo Summit, while the Lake Tahoe Chapter covers the Tahoe basin.