It is a large and extensive beach, about 3 miles south of Cape Bird, consisting of alternating prograded storm-wave beaches separated by shallow hollows occupied by ponds. Towards its southern end the prograded part of the beach merges with a low and extensive stream fan which in part was cut back to a low cliff edge before the present phase of progradation commenced. Named by the NZGSAE, 1958-59, for Captain Edwin S McDonald, formerly Deputy-Commander, US Naval Support Force, Antarctica, who provided extensive transport and other facilities for this NZ Expedition, and whose sympathetic support facilitated the survey of the Cape Bird district.

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