.44 Mag is pretty stout, but I think I would prefer a .454 Casull or .500 myself. Where in AK will you be traveling? Most of Southeast AK is populated by blackbear and they will go running LONG before you even know they were there. One major exception to SE AK is Admiralty Island, which has a significant Brown bear population. They tend to be a little more confident and actual interactions are higher with Brownies.
Mainland has Brownies and Grizzly, yeah, they're mean, but nothing compared to Polar. Those guys are way ill tempered.
Enjoy the heck out of your trip. It's simply amazing up there. And I may see ya up there, depending on when/where ya go. I'll be in SE AK from June thru Sept.
BTW, just a side note; If you plan to have a handgun up there, you will have to bring it with you one way or another. The state of Alaska will not sell a handgun to any person not holding residency status in Alaska.