I only use them in the creek in my backyard for catching bait. With a good cured light cane pole about 10' or 11' long, I can pull bream, shiners, chubs, and suckers out of the opposite side. The creek is about 25' wide and 5-1/2' down in the deepest section, but averages about 2' to 3'. Every now and then you'll see some Old Timer on the lake crappie fishing from a boat with a cane pole. If you're like me, a cane cut from a creekbank was your first fishing pole. I really thought I had something, however, when I was able to afford one of those 3 piece varnished, ferulled, 3 piece cane poles with the metal tip.