More than 1700 head were yarded at Kempsey on Friday with prices up on the previous month with coastal conditions on the improve.
Grown Charolais cross steers produced by M.A. Robinson, Boambee behind Coffs Harbour, 447kg, sold to $1208 and will go on feed, through Landmark Toowoomba.
Heifer prices were especially strong, reaching a high of $917 for Angus, produced by Joan Berry, Kinchela.
Buyers took cattle west to Warialda and close to the coast, with the likes of Clint Shields, Kinchela Cattle Co, only a couple kilometres from the beach, going home with 180 steers for grass finishing. He hopes to put a couple hundred kilograms on his new charges over the next 10 months with the lower Macleay looking the best country north of Newcastle.
In the heifer portion it was Elders Goondiwindi who dominated in the bidding, going home with 102 head destined for feeding at Dalby, Qld,
There was good competition between a pair of regular father and son buyers - David Gillett and his father Geoff from Grafton and Tim McCarthy and father Ken, from Kempsey - with the four of them proving way more civil than they would be in a campdraft arena.
Some of Ken's purchases went to another downriver pastoral property, Wombulla next door to Kinchela, including a pen of 11 Angus, 290kg, for 264c/kg or $764, produced by Raymond and Robert Clarke, Nulla Creek.
Tim bought a pen of 12 of the same, 292kg for 258c/kg going onto feed near Delungra through JA McGregor Livestock and Property.
Yearling steers topped the market with Charolais cross 447kg making 270 cents a kilogram or $1208 and headed to a feed pad through Landmark Toowoomba. The Darling Downs agents also purchased Angus steers, 455kg for 262c/kg or $1193 along with the same, 460kg at 260c/kg or $1169.
Barry and Gail Lee, Sherwood, sold well presented black baldy calves, 10 months old at 318kg straight off their mothers for 256c/kg or $816 going to Kinchela Cattle Co. The couple's Hereford steers, 239kg, made 238c/kg or $569 staying local.
"We went through one of the toughest summers we've had in a long time but the cross-bred calves we turned off were pretty good," said Mr Lee, who strip grazed lucerne on the river flats during that dry period with the resilient legume about the only quality feed on the property.
Stephen Green, Bellangry on the Hastings, sold Angus at 295kg for 238c/kg or $704 also going to Kinchela.
"Our summer was tough but right now we're ahead of where we've been," said Mr Green. "I can remember selling cattle for $400 four years ago. At least we're going into winter with a green flush."
Diane Latham, Glen Rock, who poured a passion into cattle after her husband Geoff passed away within months of retirement, also sold a pen of six black baldy steers, 343kg for 256c/kg or $878 going onto feed at to go on feed and pasture at Drurys Stockfeed's "Haniresh" enterprise on Jones Island in the lower Manning, bought through David Carney. Another pen of steers, 307kg, sold for 266c/kg or $816 going onto pasture at Wombulla through Ken McCarthy.
"All my husband wanted to ever do was farm," said Mrs Latham. "So I've taken on the job myself."
Mark Thomas, Yarras on the Hastings, sold eight shorthorn steers straight off the cow, 237kg at 242c/kg or $575, saying prices compared to last month's store sale were up 20c/kg.
"In March I sold weaned calves a little bit lighter in weight and received $100 less," he said. "I was happy with Friday's sale. It looks like prices are moving in the right direction."
Hereford steers from the estate of RC Cutler, Forbes River on the Hastings, 246kg made 266c/kg or $655.
Hastings' bred Braford steers, 217kg, made 216c/kg or $469.
Light Angus steers, 150kg a head made 220c/lg or $331. Another at 163kg made 238c/kg or $604.
Shamil livestock, Urunga, sold Angus 212kg for 258c/kg or $546.
Paul and Rob Younie, Toorooka, sold Charolais and Charolais cross cattle with Wakefield blood, 215kg for 250c/kg or $510.
Another pen belonging to the father and son team, sired by the neighbour's randy Bizzy Brahman cross Angus bull, averaged 340kg and made 200c/kg or $680 going through David Gillett to Greenmount Trading at Kyogle. The Younie's best heifers, 233kg, made 218c/kg or $507.
Black baldy heifers from Barry and Gail Lee, Sherwood, 253kg made 224c/kg or $567 will go on feed at "Haniresh" on Jones Island. Another pen of the same weighing 300kg,sold for 232c/kg or $696.
Joan Latham's black baldy heifers, 301kg, topped at 222c/kg or $670.
Red and black Limousin heifers, 292kg, made 224c/kg or $655.
David and Gloria Colwell, Bundarra now Beechwood, bought Speckle Park heifers 235kg at 234c/kg or $550 going back to the paddock.
Another pen of Speckle Park heifers produced by Scone Speckle Park at Kinchela, 246kg, made 246c/kg or $607 going to Alexander Downs' feedlot at Merriwa. The wholesale meats enterprise also bought a number of calves including Charolais heifers, 274kg at 262c/kg or $719 and Angus, 281kg at 248c/kg or $697.
Second dearest heifer, Charolais cross produced by M.A Robinson, Boambee, 350kg, made 226c/kg or $791 going to Victoria.