We welcome Darran Goulder to the Fortis Collective. As an all round specimen hunter Darran's skills lie in his ability to be adaptable and follow weather conditions. As the youngest ever Drennan Cup winner he bares a fresh approach with boundless enthusiasm for all species. He is a key addition to the collective with a wealth of knowledge and ideas. Darran discusses his approach...

As an all round specimen hunter, I pride myself on being organised and ready to fish for any different species at the drop of a hat.  The key to being consistent throughout the whole year, especially in the colder months is having the ability to distinguish how the weather forecast affects a fish’s feeding patterns. All fish prefer different conditions, whether that be a spring Tench, a summer Rudd, autumn Barbel or winter Chub and that all revolves around climate.

When not out there in pursuit, most of the spare time is spent plotting the downfall of the next target. Rises and Falls in pressure – which can be anything from a heat wave in the summer, or a cold snap in the winter, can be the kiss of death for Carp or Barbel… but can also be the trigger for an Eel or cold water Chub.

It doesn’t have to be rocket science, but if you was to set a couple of species for each season and stick to it, by the end of the year you’d find you would have had a lot less blanks. For example – Tench and Carp in Spring, Carp & Eels in the summer, Barbel & Perch in the Autumn, and Chub & Pike in the Winter – you’d learn so much more about your quarry than if you would sitting it out “no matter what”.

This February I took time out of a Chub campaign to have a go for a big reservoir Pike in a short window of opportunity when the rivers were flooded.  It was also, not by chance, to coincide with the Pike being at their heaviest. Grouping up in shallower water prior to spawning, feeding hard and therefore being up for a good much is textbook.  I caught my dream Pike, and then sat it out fishing for Chub again as the rivers fined down and the water temperatures rose. Unfortunately – the huge Chub didn’t quite materialise, but I came close!