Yikes. 9 shots? Holy crap. Remember though...that's what it took to KILL it. Not speaking from experience, but I think a bear might take off if shot with a .44 mag. Nutfancy on youtube (hate him or love him) has a lot of bear country hiking experience. He carries a 10mm pistol. Dont know how I feel about that in grizzly territory. But....I'd feel ok with my .357 in areas with smaller black bear.
I recommend carrying a 9mm for bears. You only need two rounds in your magazine. One to piss off the bear and the second for either yourself or your friend's knee cap so you can out run him.
Hahaha yeah no kidding. Hear people all the time saying the gunshot noise would scare off any bear. Ummm yeaahh I'm not betting my life on a loud noise. I'd rather carry bear spray if that was the case.