Possibly one of the finest gifts the late, great Lefty Kreh gave to the fly fishing world was the Deceiver fly pattern.
In the early 1950s, Lefty Kreh could almost always be found out in the Chesapeake Bay chasing striped bass on the fly. The flies of choice at the time were baitfish patterns tied with long saddle hackles tied in near the eye of the hook. The more he fished, the more frustrated he became with the tendency of the fly materials to wrap around the shank and bend of their hooks, so he set out to design a fly pattern that would negate this issue, and thus the Deceiver was born.
As Lefty put it, “I’m going to design a fly that won’t foul on the cast! It will have a fish shape but can be made in many lengths. You can vary the color combinations; it will also swim well but when lifted for the backcast it will be sleek and have little air-resistance.”
Later in life, Lefty shifted his focus from the Stripers of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast to the tropical species that called the Florida Peninsula home, and it was here that the pattern then took on a life of its own as more and more creative tyers put their own twists on it to mimic the bait of their own fisheries. Since then, deceivers of every shape and color can be found in most streamer anglers fly boxes.
How to Tie Lefty’s Deceiver
Hook: TMC 811S
Tail: Schlappen Feathers