What to bring when renting a cabin in the Smokies
Although American Mountain Rentals strives to have everything you need on your Smoky Mountains Vacation waiting for your arrival, there are a few things you must bring on your own.
Personal Care Items
Personal care items other than bathroom tissue and travel size bars of soap are not stocked in your cabin so you must bring your own toiletries as well as a hair dryer or curling iron if you wish to use one on your trip.
If you plan on being outdoors a lot in the warmer months it is a good idea to bring sun screen and bug spray. Sun screen should also be used if you are going to be in the snow especially along ridge lines as even if it is cold outside, the reflected sunlight can still give you a sunburn.
Around the Kitchen
Cookware and supplies: Kitchens are stocked with basic cookware, cooking utensils, plates and cups, paper towels, coffee makers, microwaves, toasters and manual can openers.
If you want to cook something requiring a special utensil such as a basting bulb or brush you should bring your own. If you need very large cookware or storage containers for leftovers, tin foil or zip loc bags you should bring your own.
Food and condiments including salt, spices and coffee are not stocked in the cabin although sometimes these items are left by previous guests.
Refrigerators and Ice: Ice makers or ice cube trays are supposed to be in the cabin but if for some reason you must have ice right away or a large quantity of ice, it is advised you bring your own.
Before filing up the refrigerator in the cabin or chalet, you must remember that unlike your refrigerator at home, this one is completely empty upon your arrival. Even if there is little in your fridge at home, there are always condiments and other items that help retain the cold.
Please make sure that any large quantities of bottled water, juice, soda or beer that you put onto the refrigerator upon your arrival is "refrigerator" cold and not room temperature or warmer.
If the food or drinks you want to put in the refrigerator is not cold, you should only put in a small quantity or it make take a day or more in order to properly cool down these drinks.
At the same time the cabins refrigerator is trying to cool the food, it can warm up the other food in the fridge. The more room temperature condiments and items such as ketchup, pickles, mustard etc you put in the fridge, the fewer warm drinks you can add.
A few room temperature bottles or cans among otherwise cold food is fine, but if you must bring room temperature drinks or cannot purchase cold ones locally, we strongly suggest that you bring along a cooler and purchase ice at one of the many stores close by.
During winter months, you may want to leave drinks in your car until they are cooled down enough to go into the fridge. Never leave even sealed food in cans or bottles outside which can attract bears, often leading to their death.
Given 48 hours for the refrigerator to cool everything properly and the temperature to stabilize, you should be able to add a case a case of drinks a day without a problem.
Cabins with gas grills will have gas supplied by American Mountain Rentals but you must bring charcoal and lighter fluid for charcoal grills.
Towels and Linens
Plenty of bath towels and wash towels are supplied in each cabin as well as pillows, linens and blankets for all regular beds. This starter supply should be more than enough for 3 or 4 day stays.
Linens are not supplied for pull out beds and futons so if you will have guests staying in one of these beds you must bring your own.
You can bring dirty linens and towels and exchange them for clean ones between 10 am and 4 pm at the American Mountain Rentals office at 110 Hillis Drive in Pigeon Forge.
Many cabins and vacation homes we rent have a washer and dryer you can use and if you don't feel like making a trip to exchange laundry.
Suggestion: Bring your bathrobe - you will be happy you did especially when using the hot tub in the cooler months!
Cabins and Chalets that have washing machines should not have laundry detergent so you must bring your own. We suggest buying a small travel size which you can refill at home for your next trip to the Smokies!
Many cabins that have washing machines also may have irons and ironing boards but not all of them do so if you must have an iron it is advised to bring your own.
Laundering light colors with well water which most cabins and chalets have, may tint your garments and we are not responsible for damage or discoloration to your laundry.
Most cabins have DVD players and/or VCRs but movies are not supplied. There is a blockbuster located at 699 Parkway, Suite 1 in Sevierville.
All cabins and chalets have a telephone where you can receive phone calls or call 911. Bring a calling card for outgoing calls you wish to make. Some cabins do have free long distance which will be listed in the cabins description and although most cabins have local calling service. This can change without notice.
Cell phone service is spotty and can vary by season and weather conditions - the same for cellular internet service. Verizon and US Cellular service work best in the area, but if you must make any phone calls you should bring a telephone calling card.
Some cabins now have internet service available and if they do, it will be listed in the cabins descriptions. These cabins do not have computers for your use so you must bring your own - preferably a laptop.
For dial up or wired high speed internet service bring your own cords and for cabins with wireless internet access, your computer must have a wireless card.
There is a radio shack in Gatlinburg on 321 and a Wal-mart on the Parkway by the Sevierville - Pigeon Forge border.
It is best to check to see how to use your computer outside of your normal network before you come here on vacation or in our office before you go to the cabin as you may need to change settings in your computer or security software manually in order to use a network outside of your home. This is not something we can help you with!
If you are unable to get your wireless or wired internet service that we provide to work in your cabin or chalet, you need to bring your laptop to our office to see if it is your computer settings which accounts for almost all of the internet issues our guest have.
Although the Smoky Mountains have very moderate temperatures, as with any mountain environment it can get very cool in the high altitudes even in summer so be sure to bring rain gear and warm clothing.
Layering is the most effective way to stay warm without overheating so it is better to have 2 medium layers than one heavy layer. It is a good idea if you plan on hiking or walking around town in cooler weather bring an empty back pack so you can remove or put on a layer when you need to.
If you are planing on hiking on the more rugged trails, bring hiking boots that are broken in before you get here and wear them in the week or so preceding your trip so they will be comfortable on the trail. Sandals, open toes shoes and crocks and not appropriate footwear except on the paved trails.
Snow in the Smokies
While snow in the very high attitudes of the national park can be found from October to May, mid and lower altitudes generally do not get much snow and accumulations usually do not last long. There is never a guarantee that it will or will not snow so be prepared.
Driving in the snow on mountain roads is not advised. While having 4 wheel or all wheel drive will help, it is best to stay off the road.
Last but not least!
Don't forget to bring your camera to capture all of those Great Smoky Mountains Memories. We would love if you post pictures of yourself having fun on Facebook Too!
American Mountain Rentals want you to have a safe and enjoyable vacation and we welcome your comments and suggestions about your stay with us.