Hi Matt -
Welcome to western MI!
I'd suggest that you check with area 4WD shops for clubs, trail suggestions, or introductions to other wheelers.
Here in GR, I am aware of a club, Two-Trackers 4WD club (Google for Web site). I have never joined with them, but some acquaintances have, or are active members.
The "Blessing of the Jeeps" is coming up in Mesick, MI (~25 miles beyond Cadillac on M-115) - usually the weekend before Mothers' Day (? - see site). Good networking opportunity?
To locate trails, Michigan DNR has a list and maps on their site. Again, the local shops could be a resource.
I've done only a single drive with a group. It actually was a novice driving class arranged through the Fortune Bay Expedition Team (Grand Rapids/Courtesy Jeep). They, too, have a site. Also, they are forming an outing into northern Ontario, this Fall.
P.S. - Some of the FBET people occasionally post in the Regional section on the Expedition Portal Forum (www.expeditionportal.com/forum