Of all the millions of different combinations of saltwater flies, three files stand out as time-tested fish catching magnets and many variations of these have been developed over the past 30 years.
The Clouser Minnow, Deceiver, and Surf Candy revolutionized saltwater flies and are probably the three most universal flies out there. The creators of these flies are huge names in fishing and fly-fishing communities and have the same “awe-status” as Hall of Famers in the game of baseball.
These flies are a “must-have” for fly-fisherman, and should also be for conventional lure fisherman as all three can be used as teasers to accent a main lure. And 9 out of 10 times, the fish will hit the teaser. So whether you fish the sweetwater or the saltwater, look into adding these flies to your tackle box.
Bob’s Clouser Minnow
The Clouser Minnow fly was a unique fly created by Pennsylvania fly-fishing guide Bob Clouser, who developed the fly using weighted-dumbbell eyes to allow the fly to be fished underwater. Originally meant for Pennsylvania smallmouth bass, the fly quickly became successful fly for saltwater gamefish from striped bass to bonefish. It has been noted to catch over 87 saltwater and freshwater gamefish, which makes it one of the most versatile flies in the box.
Lefty’s Deceiver Fly
The Deceiver fly was created by the “well-known” fly-fisherman and author Lefty Kreh for use on striped sass in the Chesapeake Bay in the late 1950’s. Over time the creation has spawned a wide variety of variations and patterns that can be used all over the world. The flies unique pattern imparts great action with hackle feathers, while not fouling hookups as flies prior to it’s creation.
Popovic’s Surf Candy
This epoxy-based baitfish imitation was developed by New Jersey-based fly-fisherman and photographer Bob Popovics who sought to develop a fly that mimic slender baitfish and was more durable for toothy gamefish. Epoxy based lures exploded with variations from baitfish to shrimp to crabs and have been developed for a variety of gamefish. The surf candy variations also work great as teasers especially for surf anglers swimming plugs.