The number of friends I have met and established in over 20 years of doing this is phenomenal.
As mentioned above, the very few public roads that are available throughout New England are not signed at all as to what sections of them are the actual road and what areas may be illegal bypass cuts or even lead into private land. Hell, there is one particular one that leads into the back side of a shooting range... How would you like to end up there? I'm sure you wouldn't.
So, no one is going to let you in on the locations of these few roads that are available because we value them for the responsible wheelers. We can't have another Coy Hill situation, those responsible, organized wheelers simply won't let it happen.
As it stands, you can try real hard to find some people around here who don't mind taking the chance of getting those $100+ tickets with you.. If you do, I'm sure you'll have the same outlook on things and you may possibly become friends. Doesn't seem to make any sense, you'd be willing to give $100 to the state for absolutely no reason when they are doing NOTHING to provide roads and trails for us/you to use. But paying half that to join a club and be able to wheel legally all year, every weekend, is definitely not something you'd want to do.
Or... you could join a club. Maybe $50. Maybe even less depending on the club... Lots of friends to hang out with, whether on the trail or at a local pub or even in someone's garage wrenching on their truck.. or YOUR truck. Nope, guess thats not worth $50 a year...
If you decide to join, thats great, I'll almost definitely seeya out on the trails at some point.
If you don't, you'll still be trying to find those friends who feel the same way, still trying to find those old roads and I'll be wheeling all over New England...
You see, I have what you want and I don't have to give any of it to anybody if I don't want to... Sounds pretty harsh huh? Guess what, I've been doing this over 20 years, fighting for rights for everyone (that includes you and you didn't even realize it didya) to be able to use public lands and even fighting for our private land rights... for a whole bunch of people I don't know. I've spent months pouring over maps and attending meetings and going to town clerks offices to find out if a town road is legally still on the books as open or if it has reverted to the abutting landowners. That work is done for people who are willing to support organized four wheeling. If you choose not to support organized wheeling, then, have fun finding them on your own. And, as you head out looking, without any assurance that where you are is legal, there will always be that thought in the back of your mind, that if you get caught, you'll be paying a $100 fine.. or even worse, depending just where you are.
Also, there are a LOT of people on this forum now (as evidenced in just this thread) that are "patrolling" you might say, for people setting up runs to illegal/closed locations. When found posting for these illegal rides, these "lurkers" will probably alert you to the fact that where you are headed is indeed closed. If the group decides to still do the ride to the closed location, you can expect to be met with local law enforcement. Ya see, there are also people who will post up to attend these rides and then report those who are attending... and no one will know who it is.
So, you see, joining a club is really the way to go. Now, if you were say, only in the area for a few months or a week or something, then, many of those same clubs would probably invite you along for a ride or two without charging you anything. But that doesn't seem to be the case.
Your choice. No skin off my teeth.. I have thousands of acres to wheel on, lots of friends... You could too.... or not...