The County of Los Angeles, is a county in the U.S. state of California. It is the most populous county in the United States. Los Angeles County alone is more populous than 43 individual U.S. states. The county seat is the city of Los Angeles.
Los Angeles County also includes two offshore islands, San Clemente and Santa Catalina. The county is home to 88 incorporated cities and many unincorporated areas.
Law enforcement and court bailiff duties to the county are provided by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, and fire services by the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Both agencies also contract services to small encorporated cities in the county.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 4,751 square miles (12,310 km2). Los Angeles County borders 70 miles (110 km) of coast on the Pacific Ocean and encompasses towering mountain ranges, deep valleys, forests, islands, lakes, rivers, and desert. Most of the population of Los Angeles County is located in the south and southwest, with major population centers in the Los Angeles Basin, San Fernando Valley and San Gabriel Valley. Other population centers are found in the Santa Clarita Valley, Crescenta Valley and Antelope Valley.
The county is divided west-to-east by the rugged San Gabriel Mountains, filled with forests and subject to plentiful snowfall in the winter. The San Gabriel Mountains are part of the Transverse Rangesof southern California, and are contained mostly within the Angeles National Forest.