Peirce sought to understand what all varieties of inquiry, ranging from everyday reasoning and problem solving to full-fledged scientific method, have in common. Taking a cue from Aristotle he developed a model of inquiry that recognized three independent types of inference — abductive, deductive, inductive.
There is a different type of inferential gap or leap involved in each type of inference. In the wild, all three types of inference are taking place all the time, interweaving in parallel and series on many fronts at once. In order of logical priority, however, we usually think of the abductive leap as starting the ball rolling.