The Puget Sound is home to a number of warships but these two vessels have a different sort of mission than their cousins in Bremerton. The Cape Intrepid and Cape Island were built in 1975 and 1976 respectively and have gone through a few name and role changes throughout their worldwide service.
They’re now part of a fleet of 99 vessels around the country that make up the National Defense Reserve Fleet. The 10 person crew keep the ships stocked with food and emergency supplies in a perpetual state of readiness. If called upon, the ships can be activated and deployed within five days in response to national defense needs or other crises.
Bonus fact: If you see a smaller ship with a similar style elsewhere in Commencement Bay, it might be one of the Army’s Logistics Support Vessels stationed in the port. Also, despite the popular myth, the Army does not have more ships/boats than the Navy.