You are in big animal country. There are other good choices besides mine but if I where carrying in your area I would carry a S&W29 or 629. The Mountain Gun would work but I would rather have a 5 or 6 inch barrel to keep the velocity up. If you were to go Ruger instead I would go with .45 long colt and use the magnumized versions of that classic cartridge. There are more powerful cartridges than these for sidearms but the guns start getting really big. While I would lean towards the M29 like I said there are other good ones out there as well. The Tauras Tracker in 41 magnum might even be a viable alternative. As a home defense gun size does not matter until it gets too big for you to handle properly. For the home I would go with either the faster .44 Special loads or some Mild Magnums. Full house .44 magnum might be a bit much for home defense. The Ruger in .45 Long Colt might be a better option. There are loads for the .45 long Colt that are probably a little more effective on larger animals than is available in .44 magnum. These loads are too stout for Smith and Wesson N-Frame guns. Then for the home there are plenty of mild mannered .45 Long Colt rounds that would work well for self defense.