This technical paper presents the genetic programming (GP) approach to predict the critical submergence for horizontal intakes in open channel flow for different bottom clearances. Laboratory data from the literature for the critical submergence for a wide range of flow conditions were used for the development and testing of the proposed method. Froude number, Reynolds number, Weber number and ratio of intake velocity and channel velocity were considered dominant parameters affecting the critical submergence. The proposed GP approach produced satisfactory results compared to the existing predictors.