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White Acres Day Two

Editor Jon Arthur's second day of competition in the White Acres Garbolino Winter Festival 2011.

Day Two - Twin Oaks

Gales and heavy rain all day today! It's taken me over an hour to dry everything out and, coupled with the usual Cornish cold epidemic half of us seem to have contracted, it's not been that nice to be honest!

I drew Peg 8 on Twin Oaks which I felt would be quite straightforward to fish. The plan was casters short for roach and groundbait at 11 metres (if I could hold it!) for possible skimmers.

I had a terrible start. I had somehow put a small hole in my No6 section (probably a stone chip) and despite taping it up for a couple of days it chose today to fold in half - just as I was cupping out the second of three balls of groundbait. I quickly got a spare out the rod bag then promptly got it completely vacuum-wedged into my No5 section five minutes later! Once again I was off my box looking for a spare section and tried my best to dry the rain and grit all off this time before putting them together! The next 10 minutes were no better as everyone around me caught roach and were at least four or five fish up on me before I had my first bite.

It took a good 20 minutes to crack it and eventually get into a catching rhythm. Once I did, I was flying and catching 2-4oz roach plus the odd better fish regularly. A 4x16 Maver Polar was best with No6 Slip elastic through three sections, 0.08mm hooklength to a size 16 Green Gama hook. I eventually got them going properly on casters and got through three pints to weigh in a pleasing 27lb 12oz... but just 5oz off winning the section. Ouch!

Jason Lebosquet won it and had two tench and two big perch in his 28lb 1oz catch whereas my best fish was just a 1lb hybrid. Oh well.

Could I have had those extra ounces? Definitely! I had a bad start and also wasted a few minutes having a look down the edge and at 11 metres. I perhaps should've stuck to my short-pole swim but it definitely needed the occasional rest just to let them regroup. Oh, and I also played a big fish for five minutes in the hope that it was an F1 or tench... but it turned out to be a rogue 3lb common carp that didn't count, so I had to throw it back. I'm still relatively happy with how I fished but those measly ounces will probably come back to haunt me...

Once again I had taken the lodge sweep £1 coins, however, so that helped to cheer me up, while going out for a tasty Chinese in Newquay helped warm us all up too. I'm on the High Bank of Pollawyn tomorrow. We are definitely all praying for better weather!

Jon Arthur

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