Desertscout had it right, don't take legal advice from a bulletin board, check with the state fish & wildlife departments for where you want to hunt. Make sure they hear .357 mag RIFLE. Many states have minimum power requirements rather than min. caliber, or some have a combination of both. In some of these states, cartridges that meet the requirements for handgun will not be legal for hunting when used in a rifle, and vice versa.
An example is here in NE, a handgun must deliver at least 400 ft/lbs of energy at 50 yds. A rifle must have at least 900 ft/lbs at 100 yds.
.357 mag makes the cutoff for handguns but falls way short if you want to shoot it out of a rifle. Even a .44 mag falls short (depending on load) out of a rifle even though a nice little .44 mag carbine would be a great brush gun.