Its glory days behind, reviving a dead golf course in Rio Rancho will be a big challenge for Albuquerque entrepreneur Steven Chavez.

It’s been dormant and unused for a long time. But Chavez has plenty of enthusiasm and loads of ideas. He just needs to see which ones will work.

He has already started work on the site.

Tuesday the course was getting spruced up. Long dead trees were knocked down by heavy machinery. They will be cut into firewood for local residents. Brush was also being cleared — to be mulch that local residents can pick up in a week or so. (check back on the Observer web site — — to find out when the mulch and wood will be available for pick up.)

The Rio Rancho Observer paid a trip to the site of the now-defunct golf course before the clean-up got under way.

At one time, it’s pretty clear that this golf course was a special place.

The fairways wind gently through the course. And the view toward the mountains is spectacular, even without the greens and fairways.

This day, however, it is a broken mix of concrete roadblocks, cart paths, dead trees and brush. On one of the roadblocks rests a pair of ratty jeans.

Steps show where a tee box once lived. The rack for golf clubs is rusty and bent, and cracks mar the parking lot.

And on what used to be a driving range, the 150-yard marker still flutters in the wind. Yet it is still groovy. At least, according to the graffiti scribbled on one wall.

But that was in the past.

The ponds, Chavez said, now green and wrapped in weeds, will be cleaned out and replaced. New trees, unique with special leaves, will be brought in. Weeds along resident fences along the property will be cleared. In a couple of weeks, it’s going to look very different, Chavez said.

Here is a before, and during of the clean-up that will be going on for a couple of weeks at the site. When finished, the Observer will make another trip to the project.