Tag Archives: leaflet

Recreation Facilities around Lassen Volcanic National Park


Come git it outdoorsy nerds! Recreation facilities for all (developers)!

The Recreation Information Database (RIDB) is a comprehensive database containing authoritative outdoor recreation facility information for most US federal agencies that provide recreation services including the National Park Service, US Forest Service and many, many others.

I’ve been following the progress since its inception and when the USDA came out with an API to access it I dove in to make a web map to access recreation facilities, from a map.

The application is pretty straightforward. You can pan and zoom the map and recreation facilities will be display with recognizable icons within the current extent or, if zoom level is far out, a predefined radius based on zoom level. Clustering keeps things tidy. I also used the Mapzen Search service along with the Mapzen Leaflet Geocoder to provide autocomplete search capability.

Give it a try here:


Source project:


The Services:

Recreation Information Database API

Mapzen Search (geocoding API)

The Stack:


Leaflet marker cluster

Mapzen leaflet geocoder

Leaflet locate control

Mapbox for basemap

naip wms | mapbox satellite

On Tuesday MapBox announced the release of its new Satellite layer based, partially, on NAIP imagery in the US. So I said I’d like to test it for speed against the NAIP Web Map Service (WMS) hosted by USGS National Map I’m currently using.

I was initially planning to do some benchmarking on tile load speed etc but really, it just isn’t necessary. One zoom or pan of each will tell you that MapBox is faster, hands down. So since what I do is highly visual, and because it’s a helluvah lot more fun, I simply dropped the two maps side by side and wired up some events such that, as one side is panned or zoomed, the other is set to the same resulting extent. Some flying around in either map will indeed confirm the hypothesis that MapBox is faster. But this didn’t turn out to be the most interesting part really. You can see that the quality is higher with higher contrast and crispy colors on the MapBox side. I did not alter saturation, hues etc of the imagery but simply left the default. Lots of interesting experimentation to be done there too.

Take a look for yourself and you’ll see which is faster. You will likely also discover more interesting comparisons.


Pro tip: go full screen (F11 in Firefox and Chrome)

Hat tip: And it’s centered on DC by default, for @cageyjames  – I get it, I used to be west coast.

So if you’re looking for hard data on tile loading speeds, sorry, I’ve got no numbers. I’m sure I could rig some JavaScript to test the loading speeds and gather number of tiles loaded etc., but this setup doesn’t lend itself to rigorous, fair testing for a few reasons anyway.

  1. There isn’t a map event in Leaflet that fires when all tiles are loaded (didn’t consider using anything else)
  2. Map events are wired such that a slight advantage is given to the target map
  3. MapBox Satellite also has roads and labels so a bit more load (handicap, like bowling)