There were 924 head of mixed quality cattle at the Braidwood saleyards on Friday, producers contending with bushfires and little feed or water, keen to offload what they could at the final sale of the year.
Schute Bell Badgery Lumby, Braidwood manager Anthony Atkinson said it hadn't rained in the district since early October.
"We're now well down the track, spring hasn't sprung and the country's getting burnt, so for a lot of people they've just got to go," Mr Atkinson said.
He said there were 1280 cattle in the draft, but not all were able to make it with some roads into Braidwood closed due to the fires.
"People are busy looking at the sky, wondering where it's heading to next," Mr Atkinson said.
Cows and calves sold from $600 to $1400, averaging $1158.
Greg Darmody of W.J Gibbs and Co said the numbers of cows and calves were up at the sale this month, 118 head yarded.
"Producers decided to sell them as units rather than split them because the cow market has backed off and the slaughter market," Mr Darmody said.
Cesare Pastoral Company sold a pen of Angus cows with three to five month-old calves for $1240 a unit.
The cow market was cheaper, selling from $490/head to $1456/hd, cows weighing under 500kg averaging $760/hd, those over 500kg averaging $189/hd.
The cow market was supported by Victorian interest. John Lopiccolo of Tatura via Shepparton, Vic said it was his second year buying cattle in the region and this year he was focused on purchasing good value cows.
"The cattle from here seem to do really well," Mr Lopiccolo said.
"We're looking to fatten the cows as they put on the most weight over summer."
Steers weighing over 300kg sold from $390/hd to $1196/hd. M and G Burgess, Bungendore sold 30 Angus steers, weighing 350kg for $998/hd.
Steers weighing under 300kg sold from $51.25 to $857/hd, the 109 weighing between 200-300kg averaging $638/hd.
Mr Darmody said the heifer job was fairly consistent, with a good selection on offer.
Heifers weighing over 300kg sold from $458/hd to $1488, for a line weighing over 501kg.
Account Alimfind Pty Ltd offered 17 Angus heifers weighing 407kg, which sold for $981/hd or 241c/kg.
Heifers weighing under 300kg sold from $260/hd to $691/hd.
Mr Darmody said while a lot of plainer quality cattle got treated accordingly there were at least homes for them all, the Victorian interest a big help to the sale.