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Spring 2022



immediate barb penetration with deeper bends and better holding power.

As a long-time prostaff member for Gamakatsu hooks, I am very fortunate to have at my disposal just about every imaginable hook style and size. This has given me the opportunity to test different treble hooks on all my lures and learn which works best with each lure type and design.

There are other premium hook manufacturers, so we are lucky to have many choices. The features discussed below pertain to Gamakatsu models, but the information discussed can be used in selecting models from other manufacturers as well.

If you read Knowing Hooks Part 1 and 2 in the previous two issues of Western Bass magazine, you already know the value of certain features like a conical hook point with a small barb, nano-coatings, tournament grade wire which is smaller in diameter, stronger, and sharper, and you know the differences in round bend hooks vs. O’Shaughnessy bends, and more.

Like single hooks, trebles are available in standard, 2X, and 4X gauge wire for a variety of pound test lines being employed.

1970s Hooks Balsa Bs

Paying attention to the features of each hook is important before deciding which hook to use on each lure.

One of the first major improvements in treble hook design was the arrival of the EWG treble.

Besides the extremely sharp point, what makes an EWG treble so deadly is the angle of the hook point with relation to the hook eye.

When the hook point is oriented in the same direction as the line pull, less force is needed to drive the point into the bass. The point on an EWG treble is angled directly to the hook eye, so less force is needed to instantly start penetration.

Secondly, the EWG treble’s

angle of its hook bend does a much

better job of staying locked onto the


Although I still qualified for

the Federation Nationals that first

tournament of this article, I would

have done so more easily and had

big bass money had my Balsa B

been equipped with EWG trebles.

The smallmouth bass triple

header in the second tournament

scenario in this article was caught

on EWG trebles. These bass

essentially hooked themselves

when they slammed the crankbaits,

and the more they pulled the more

the barb penetrated and held,

despite the netting gymnastics.

Today, EWG trebles are

available in both long shank and

short shank, even and odd sizes,

Non-Shiny (NS) Black, bronze, and


When choosing to use an EWG

treble, the first thing I consider

is the lure style. If the lure is one

that is easily thrown when a bass

jumps (like a blade bait, spoon, or

crankbait), it is a good candidate for

an EWG.

If the lure is likely to be fully

engulfed, like a small crankbait

worked with a stop and go retrieve,