Student’s Corner

Genesee River Myths and Facts

One of the most unique characteristics of the University is the Genesee River. Here are some fun facts (and myths) about the body of water that outlines the University. How many of these did you already know?


  • It’s a “canal”: There used to be a Genesee Valley Canal, but the Genesee River is definitely not the same.
  • It freezes over during the winter: The river does not freeze since it is relatively deep and has a consistent flow of water. The soil particles in the water make it even more difficult for an ice layer to form. 
  • The brown color is from sewage: The brown color of the river is caused by small soil particles, called sediment, that are suspended in the water. The soil originates from rainstorms, snowmelt, or erosion of the river banks.


  • The river flows 158 miles north and drops 2,250 feet. 
  • The Seneca Indians of the Iroquois nation named the river “Ge-ne-see”, meaning “pleasant banks.” Learn more about the river’s history here.
  • The Genesee flows from Potter County, Pennsylvania to Lake Ontario in Rochester.
  • Various types of fish can be found in the river including smallmouth bass, king salmon, carp, catfish, brown trout, and more. 
  • Three waterfalls along the river provide hydroelectric power. Learn more about renewable energy here.


Written by Emily Su, Class of 2022. 

One Reply to “Student’s Corner”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.