There were a few wet jackets in the crowd as the rain teemed down at the beginning of the 2022 Edenhope first-cross ewe and lamb sale.
Agents yarded about 10,000 sheep in total, with 6200 being 1.5-year-old lambs and 5800 being ewe lambs.
The auction began with two pens breaking the $400 a head barrier, with one pen of 229 1.5-year-old ewes sold by Mark and Janine Hancock, Miga Lake, going for $400, while DT & RJ Hill sold 148 1.5-year-old ewes for $402.
The highs of mid-$400 prices of last year were not seen this time around as lots of 1.5-year-old ewes continued to sell from the $310-$380 range from that point on, with younger ewe lambs generally hovering about the $220-$275 range.
The Hancocks were also awarded the John McDonald Memorial for best presented pen, which the couple were "stoked" by.
"We are very surprised and pleased by the award," Mr Hancock said.
He said his operation "had some excess rain" in the last couple of months, but besides that, it had been a good year.
"[The ewes'] spring growth has been excellent this year for us," he said.
He said while there was no secret to presenting his ewes, he said good breeding stock, a good amount of feed and shearing were crucial elements to presenting ewes well at the sale.
"We buy stock that will grow out and have good breeding," he said.
"Probably the biggest thing is the feed, and it can be 75 per cent of making a sheep.
"But shearing of the sheep was magnificent and made them present so beautifully and that's done by a good friend and neighbour, Adam Ferguson, who is a good local and runs his own farm as well.
"There were not many lines on the sheep and they just looked really nice, so it's a credit to him."
AWN Edenhope branch manager David Hanel said the good-quality yarding was a major achievement, considering the "trying last month with six to eight inches of rain through the Edenhope region".
Mr Hanel said many local buyers turned up to purchase at the sale, along with those from South Australia, and southern and central-western Victoria.
"[There was] good representation of the usual repeat purchasers from the south-west, Wimmera and Edenhope," he said.
"One-and-a-half-year-old ewes had solid competition on most lines.
"Some of the younger and smaller lines represented good buying for anyone to grow out."
Of the ewe lambs, the top price for a lot was $270, which was hit twice, first for a pen of 228 ewe lambs sold by Westwood, and second for a pen of 170 ewe lambs sold by AA & JL Ferguson.
The average prices for ewe lambs was $219.
Mr Hanel said ewe lambs were the highlight for sellers, with repeat purchasers giving very consistent competition on all drafts, with some lines of second drafts realising only $10-$15 less than the tops.
"Wimmera districts enjoyed a great start to the season, but received anywhere from 6-8 inches in October and early November," he said.
"The general yarding was a credit to the breeders, under trying conditions.
"The wet finish in the south may have also resulted in less buyer support at the sale, as a lot of paddocks down there are still waterlogged."