Static Mapbox API for Jekyll posts

code • July 26, 2014

I’ve done Static Google Maps Image for Jekyll Posts, Mapbox for Jekyll Posts, but it’s time to settle down.

I’m going with the static Mapbox API.

Front matter

The front matter of this post supplies locations and coordinates.

  - -73.7236504,43.2294791
locations: Moreau Lake State Park

As it stands, the locations variable doesn’t help generate the static map. The Mapbox API accepts coordinates, but I want to keep the locations as a label and for future flexibility.

Zoom is also available as a front matter variable, but I set a default of 15, which generally works for most of my maps.

Generating the map

I updated my map include to generate the static map:

{% if page.coordinates %}
<div class="post-map-header">
    style="background-image:url({{ site.mapid }}/{% for coordinate in page.coordinates limit:1 %}{{ coordinate }}{% endfor %},{% if page.zoom %}{{ page.zoom }}{% else %}15{% endif %}/1280x300.png?access_token={{ site.mapbox-token }})"
{% endif %}

I placed my public API token and mapid in my config file, so that I can quickly edit those items when necessary.

Now a static Mapbox map will generate when I create a post that has coordinates defined in the front matter.

Styling on Mapbox

To style the map, I opened it up on the Mapbox site. I started with one the preset styles. I changed the terrain color to the background color of my site. Next, I adjusted the alpha of the streets, buildings, areas, and water to about 50%. This lightened up the map without me needing to do so in CSS.

Some of the maps have a cool effect, such as the map I used for this post (as see in my Palmertown Mountain Range post). I’m really digging it.

I updated the front matter on all my map-having posts with coordinates. Now this entire site runs on the static Mapbox API. Also, I upgraded to Mapbox v4 and the quality is amazing!

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