Unakite is a granite rich in green epidote. It also contains pink orthoclase feldspar, quartz and small amounts of apatite and zircon, which are opaque oxides.
This specimen was collected near Airpoint in Roanoke County, Virginia. The massive rock exposure was along the edge of a very busy highway, and it was quite dangerous to whack off a specimen with fractured pieces of stone flying out in the path of speeding cars. Our best collecting procedure was to pry large chunks loose and carry the chunks to a safer place off of the main drag. Trimming specimens to desired specimen size was then carried out with relative safety.
(Also see this photograph in larger format.)
Copyright © 2006 William T. Hathaway.