A 90-metre landslip is stopping beef producers on the Mid North Coast from getting about 1000 weaners to market.
They were told to employ a droving team to cross rugged mountain terrain or wait at least six weeks for the local council to come up with an alternative track that's currently only suitable for 4WD access.
The landholders became isolated after recent rain and flooding events caused the landslip on Toose Road, west of Bellbrook near Kempsey. The landslip is part of an older, larger landslip in the same steep area, around 55 metres above the Macleay River.
While the landholders have offered to fix the road in the short-term, Kempsey Shire Council engineers have found it to be "extremely dangerous and accessing the road would put residents at a significant risk".
There is no way to get fodder or fuel to their properties and they can't swim cattle across the Macleay River as it's too high from the rain.
Helicopters are dropping food once a week but producers are "fuming" they can't get their cattle out that are ready for sale.
"We were told by (Oxley MP) Melinda Pavey's office to get a droving team to take cattle over the stock route, that's what they did 100 years ago and is not a viable option today," Shane Warwick said, who runs 400 breeders on his property Stockyard Creek.
Between the six landholders, Mr Warwick said there were 1000 weaners ready to come out before winter.
Mr Warwick said the council was proposing a bridge across the river in the long-term but in the short-term producers were getting a second opinion from a Geotech expert.
"They can put a tunnel under Sydney Harbour surely they can fix this small stretch or road," he said.
Towal Creek station manager Newman Hollis, who runs 1300 head, said the council had indicated it could be up to two years before the road was cleared.
"The weaners are ready now, we can't wait even six weeks," Mr Hollis said.
"We have people willing to move the dirt and rocks to open up the road everyone is fuming."
Take our federal election survey: What's your top three election issues?
Landholders met with Kempsey Shire Council on April 13 to discuss access options for the short and long-term.
On the council's website, director operations and planning, Robert Fish, said there was a significant amount of frustration among the residents whose lives and incomes were being affected by this slip.
"It's a hard conversation to be told that this slip is highly dangerous, could fail catastrophically at any time and that it's not possible to dig out a bit of flatter ground like has been done in the past," Mr Fish said.
He said council had identified an alternative route, part of which goes through private property and uses old fire trail.
"We are working through the legal and environmental approvals as fast as possible to be able to construct a gravel access road, but this will take five to six weeks," Mr Fisk said.
"This road would become the access option for 12 months to two years and we heard very clearly that access for trucks to move cattle, fodder and fuel is required but at this stage we can't guarantee that the alternative access road will be suitable.
"We will continue to work through the issues...while also starting investigations on the viability of longer-term multimillion-dollar solutions, that may involve repairing the slip or constructing a bridge over the Macleay River."
Oxley MP Melinda Pavey said the conversation about using the stock route was about exploring what options were viable to shift the weaners.
"Landholders told us they have weaners and they need to get them out," Ms Pavey said.
"It was a conversation about what was viable and what wasn't and we were not telling them what to do by any stretch."
Love agricultural news? Sign up for The Land's free daily newsletter.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.