Re: thoughts on a 357
The advantages of using .38 special in a .357 negate the recoil thing.
However, I would agree that a larger .357 is better to shoot from a recoil standpoint for hunting purposes.
I regard the .357 mag as a fanatastic 'all around' gun for defense and hunting, with a wide variety of bullet weights and shot loads available, and great accuracy as a norm.
You are what you do, when it counts.