Mathman 3 -
Willowood Park


Terrain: Easy (flat with one moderate hill)

Difficulty: Easy (kid & mathematically challenged friendly)

Placed by The Dragon (Mathman) and his Honors Advanced Algebra students on June 22, 2003

Location: Menomonee Falls, Waukesha County, WI

Materials needed: Rubber stamp, stamp pad, calculator (?), compass, these clues

Dragon's Home Page
Mathman Home Page


Students and parents of students should read my introduction to letterboxing before seeking the boxes.


This box is the third in a series of letterboxes with mathematical clues.  The boxes are intended for both regular letterboxers and my students.  This box was developed by some of my Honors Advanced Algebra students for an extra credit opportunity, and as an example for future boxes to be created by my students.  Unfortunately, their clues did not work well, so I turned this into an elementary level Mathman box for those letterboxers not wanting as much of a challenge as the other boxes in this series provide, or for letterboxing kids to do.  (Please excuse the minor mis-spelling of the name of the park on the stamp - not my fault!)  Enjoy!



Be sure to read through all the clues before looking for the box so you know what is expected of you.

Take Hwy 41/45 to the Silver Spring Rd. exit and head west on Silver Spring Rd.  Willow Wood Park is on the south side of Silver Spring between Lily Rd. and Pilgrim Rd just past the fire station.  Park in the park's parking lot.

Before you consider trashing the place, read the sign in the middle of the parking lot.  Note how much the fine is for trashing the park! ______ Note the phone number in case you see someone else trashing the park. ________________ (Sign was vandalized!  I believe the number is 251-8477.)

Go watch a softball game (or look at the field if a game isn't going on).  Dream of hitting a home run over the centerfield fence!  How far must you hit the ball to clear the fence?  ______ Divide that number by the fine for trashing the park and remember that number!  ______ We'll call this the "softball number".

Look to the center of the park and find the big hill.  (Where did THAT come from?)  Climb the hill and play King of the Hill for a while (or rest on a bench and let the kids play).  From the top of the hill you can see the whole park!  How many softball fields are there?  ______ How many benches are on the hill?  ______ How many tennis courts are there? ______ How many basketball hoops are there? ______ Multiply these four numbers together and remember the result.  ______ We'll call this the "hill number".

From the top of the hill, spot the south entryway into the park.  Notice that there are large rocks on either side of the driveway.  Go down there to take a look at them!  Ignore the seven rocks at the end of the driveway by the dumpster.  Count the number of rocks on the north side of the drive. ______ Count the number of rocks on the south side of the drive.  ______ Subtract the number of rocks on the north from the number of rocks on the south.  ______ We'll call this the "rock number".  Take the square root of the number of rocks on the south side. ______  We'll call this the "rock root number".

Hey!  There's a playground nearby!  What's a park without a playground?  Go and play for a while!  Find the "matrix" of oval blocks you can turn.  They have a picture and word on one side and nothing on the other side.  It has 6 rows and 3 columns.  Turn the blocks so they are all blank.  Number them one through eighteen counting across by row.  Turn the following blocks to their non-blank side:

The softball number, the hill number, the rock number, and the rock root number.

The matrix will now show you a number and what direction to go.  Using the number, multiply its first digit times the two digit number made up of its last two digits.  ______ This is the number of paces you are away from the letterbox!  Start counting and head in the direction indicated on the matrix.  Stop counting and walking when you reach the middle of the "four-sided beach".  One of the triangles that make up the boundary of this "beach" points to the closest tree from this spot.  Begin counting paces again as you head in the direction of the pointer (you'll go along the right side of the nearby tree).  About the time you run out of paces, you should find yourself at a tree line before a large multi-trunked tree.


Search between the trunks of the tree for your prize (it's under loose bark and leaves)!  Please re-hide the box well so it can't be seen from any side of the tree!  Thanks!

Good luck!

Before you set out read the waiver of responsibility and disclaimer.

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