I have Recoil snakes on two rods, and one of their greatest features is
shedding ice. I fished two Aeroflexes this past winter, one with RECOIL guides, and the other with chrome. The chrome guides were good for about
two casts, and then they were choked with ice. The REC Ti guides never really
had so much ice on them that I couldn't keep casting. I guess it's the thinner wire, combined (maybe) with the vibrating they're known for. All I know is
that on the same day, time, and spot, the Recoil guides didn't ice up much.
I think you have to spend some $$$ on a G. Loomis to get Recoil guides off
the rack, however.
Off-the-rack rods in Med-Fast 9' 5wt:
-St. Croix Legend Ultra (not as fast as St. Croix describes)
-St. Croix Avid
I've owned both of these rods, and would choose the Legend Ultra. It's
a smooth rod to cast, and has nice hardware. The Avid works as well, and
is also built nicely. Both rods have good sensitivity, and that's getting hard
to find lately: everyone wants a rod to cast 100 feet, and they wind up
feeling like broomsticks. A slick/clean line will shoot through regular guides
nicely, and make anything like ceramic guides un-necessary
for a line that states it has a hard coating. Cortland's Lazerline comes to
mind, and it does
shoot through guides very well.