How to tie up to a mooring
Those large bouys can be problematic. Typically, you''ll find them in transient municipal mooring areas. Anytime you pick up a mooring, it takes a little faith that the equipment is sound, and that you''re not going to drift free.
I was thinking more of the seasonal bouy one finds in your typical marina, of the round, ball style. Many of these have a mechanism inside that allows the top ring to rotate. Over time, this can fail -- sawing itself in half. Even if it''s a solid connection (one that doesn''t rotate), the strongest connection is made directly to the chain (or the shackle holding the chain to the bouy). Picking this type of bouy up isn''t too difficult (most of the effort is lifting the chain).
On my mooring, I''ve attached a small fender to the pendant. This makes it easier for me to grab the pendant with my boat hook, and I only have to lift the bouy twice a season -- to attach the pendant, and to remove it at the end of the season.